6 Core CBT Techniques to Use Right Now to Ground a Troubled Mind
by Oketch Joe
November 26, 2019
Occupational stress, problem concentrating, wondering about the past and the future— does any of these troubles your mind?
Nearly everyone on the planet struggles to keep the mind focused on what matters in life. And when the situation gets out of hand, it is quick for doctors to prescribe psychotropic drugs as a psycho-social intervention.
After all, anti-psychotics are powerful and work nearly instantly.
But there is one problem with such prescriptions. Psychotropic drugs often come with side effects.
Fortunately, there is a smarter way to ground a troubled mind. A safer technique that empowers one to find new behaviours by mastery of thought pattern.
In fact, it is a kind of therapy that don`t need drugs but only redirecting the everyday moment that slips by without us even noticing.
And that’s what this post is all about.
Let’s get started.
Introducing Cognitive Behavioural Therapy
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is a psychotherapy that focuses on assisting an individuals to comprehend how ways of thinking and feelings impact behaviours. It is a psychotherapeutic technique that represents the peak of current scientific knowledge of how the human mind and emotion operate.
Tons of psychological researches back up cognitive behavioural therapy techniques as they repeatedly demonstrate that they are the most effective remedy for the majority of psychological issues.
But here is one question that brings everything in clear perspective:
How, exactly, does CBT cool a troubled mind— because that`s the end goal?
To paint a clearer picture, we`ll further explore Cognitive Behavioral Therapy techniques.
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy Techniques
CBT techniques are science-based methods that aim at altering dysfunctional thought patterns, feelings, and behaviours to treat different psychological issues. And there is a plethora of techniques, strategies and interventions at your disposal. Majority of these techniques are best executable in a therapist-client setting. But we`ll only focus on those that lend themselves quite well to individual situations.
Let`s get started.
Not all CBT methods are the same. Others like Cognitive Restructuring are the cornerstone of CBT.
This technique entails tracing flaws in thought pattern and physically recording them to build the psychological skill that intercepts non-functioning thinking patterns.
The practice empowers an individual to spot and dispute thinking pattern behind negative moods and unproductive behaviours.
Graded Exposure Assignment
Graded Exposure technique is a strategy to navigate through problematic fear systematically.
Nearly everyone avoids a situation they fear. However, evasion of feared situations sustains the feeling of fear and develops anxiety.
Employing several systematic techniques steadily exposes a person to situations causing him distress, allowing one to master feared situation progressively.
Here is a step-by-step strategy to execute graded exposure:
- Identify a situation that causes you to distress
- Split down the gap between your current position and where you`re aiming at into small manageable steps.
- Spot, take note and learn to master any point that causes mild anxiety.
- Confront your fear more frequent.
- Progressively tackle situations that link to primary anxiety.
The exercise has a 90% effectiveness rate to help people face their fear or phobia in a controlled way.
There are tons of exposure technique, and even more, ways to implement. The most common ones include:
- Situational exposure
- Systematic desensitization
- Vivo exposure
- Imaginal exposure
- Virtual Reality
Besides being the 2019 buzz, mindfulness is scientifically proven to increase memory awareness, reducing stress and negative thinking.
But lots of people think that being mindful is throwing themselves into a commitment to transcendental meditation, or yoga. While that is nearly true, it isn’t always the case. It is more of shifting the small daily habits to make a person more productive and pleased with life.
And since mindfulness is a natural quality, anyone can execute it anytime. Here are some ways to practice mindfulness:
- Dedicate time for mindfulness practice
- Make a conscious effort to focus on the present moment without judgement
- Pay attention to your thoughts, words, actions, and motivations
- Notice your judgement and let them pass
Mindfulness aims at empowering people to withdraw from overthinking or worrying about negative thoughts and divert their attention to what’s currently happening.
This one of the most straight forward CBT technique to execute.
It is a tool for combating passivity and systematically getting re-engaged in life`s routines that matter. By pointing out and fixing a time for desirable practices, one increases the probability of getting things done.
Here is a simple way to execute Activity Scheduling technique:
- Monitor your activity for the whole week to take a baseline reading of all current activity level.
- Rate the intensity of the symptom alongside the specific activity
With these two data, you can now create realistic goals on how you spread the hours of your day.
This Cognitive Behavioural Therapy technique works for people with difficulties getting things done either due to lack of familiarity with the task or the task feels overwhelming for some reason.
The technique entails mastery of a more manageable task, which simulates a more difficult task. Indisputably, it is rehearsing a behaviour with one that feels more manageable.
Nearly all of the people’s problems stem from the lack of appropriate skill to achieve what they intend to accomplish. And the only remedy is mastery of the expertise to fill in skill deficits.
Skill training is a technique prevalent in assertive training, communication training, and social training. This technique happens through role-playing, modelling or direct instruction.
Finally, here is a question you’ll hear more often:
Does Cognitive Behavioural Therapy work?
To answer that correctly, here are some factual data to paint a clearer picture:
- According to the National Institute of Health, CBT works effectively for nearly all psychological problem like occupational stress, addiction, personality disorder, anger and aggression, etc.
- What`s more, CBT is the current best standard of psychotherapy in the field. No other form of psychotherapy to be systematically superior to CBT.
In other words, the right question to ask is:
How does cognitive behavioural therapy works?
If you`re aiming at cooling a troubled mind, practising the Cognitive Behavioural Therapy examples above should get you started.
The only remaining part is you to get started.
Are you ready?