How Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and mindfulness can help us overcome many mental conditions that are “thought-focused” – like anxiety, OCD, and depression.
- CBT is a modern form of psychotherapy that has shown to be effective in treating anxiety disorders, OCD, and some forms of depression.
- I believe CBT is effective in treating these kinds of mental disorders because they are often very “thought-driven.” CBT’s specialty is focusing on how thoughts affect our mood and behavior.
- Mindfulness is a big tool in the CBT arsenal that helps us acknowledge whatever thoughts arise in the present moment, without reacting to the content.
- Using mindfulness we can watch the thoughts that enter our head, but without judging ourselves nor acting (or reacting) to those thoughts impulsively.
- Mindfulness of negative thinking can be analogous to watching scary movies. We know there is no real, immediate threat. We can sit back and view our thoughts without attaching or identifying to them.
- By acknowledging thoughts non-judgmentally, they lose their power over our mood and behavior. They just are what they are – neither good nor bad.
- At times, awareness isn’t enough to alleviate a mental disorder. In this case, CBT and mindfulness can be used to come up with solutions, such as ways to cognitively restructure how we view a past or future events.
- We can assign new meaning to past events by framing them as learning experiences or events that made us stronger.
- Have you tried CBT or something similar? How did it work out for you?