What is CBT?

CBT or Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is a common form of therapy used to change people’s way of thinking and behaving, provided by the NHS. This method is helpful because it addresses the present and not the past; this means that you can change your way of thinking on a daily basis. While CBT is not commonly available on the Internet, the basics are easy to understand and can make a change in your perspective of dealing with your anxiety. Let me walk you through it.

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As you can see through the demonstration above, it really is “all in your mind”. Thinking influences your feelings, which can altar your perception of reality and cause you to behave differently. When we experience anxious thinking, we experience anxious feelings and can act erratically or irrationally. CBT, therefore bridges the gap between your cognitive ability and your behaviour. If you can change your daily thinking the moment you spot it, you can change your emotions and stop them from being hijacked by anxiety. This will in turn cause you to continue normally and will not prevent you from reaching your targets and goals.

This is not to say that all emotions are just by-products of thinking. While there is a subtle link, in the case of anxiety the link between emotions and thinking is very strong because anxiety paralyses the ability to think and leads to wave of emotions. People who do not suffer from anxiety, for example, can control their thinking and therefore their emotions operate naturally based on life experiences and activities – this is influenced by anxious thinking, by contrast, for people who suffer from anxiety. This is an important distinction, because it means if you practice CBT you can return to a state of normal emotions; it is common for sufferers of anxiety to confuse this and begin to think that their emotions aren’t real or become complacent with happiness and so on. However, this is your anxious thinking influencing your emotions – if you change your thinking, you can remove the hold that anxiety has on them and continue with your everyday life freely.