Are you a good candidate for TEAM-CBT? If you are willing to integrate the work done in sessions into your daily life, complete homework assignments weekly (homework can be any combination of written, audio/visual, mindfulness and behavioral work) and are committed to regular attendance at sessions, you are likely a good fit. This is great news, because it means you can feel better sooner and you don't need to spend years in therapy or rely on medications that often come with disagreeable side effects.
Yes, you can resolve and manage mood and sleep issues without the use of medications. Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is an evidenced based treatment for anxiety, depression, insomnia and PTSD. TEAM-CBT is an active style of cognitive behavioral therapy developed by Dr. David Burns that facilitates the realization of improved mood and relationships through active engagement in treatment. Through this process you can learn to engage in life and experience happiness and ease.
Together, we will focus on one issue at a time. Along the way, you will learn which tools and methods are most helpful to you. When your treatment goals have been realized, we will focus on relapse prevention. You can then leave therapy feeling confident you have the tools to manage your mood.
We will use many of the tools described in this book. This book can be used as a stand-alone for self-help, or in conjunction with professional mental health counseling.
Let's Work Together
What to expect...
Testing is an integral part of TEAM-CBT treatment. After all, without some form of measurement, how will you know if your symptoms are improving? We will use a Brief Mood Survey to assess your symptoms and relationship satisfaction, before and after each session. This is a great way for you to track your own progress and to develop a habit of checking in with yourself on how you are feeling. Sometimes filling out the assessments can be stressful, however it is an excellent tool for focusing our discussion from the very start of each session.
It is of utmost importance to me that you feel heard, accepted and understood, and that you have the opportunity to talk about the things that are troubling you. Empathy involves supportive listening, communication and clarification of thoughts and feelings. This process lays a good foundation for our working relationship, so that we can start and continue to do focused work together. There may be things on your heart and mind that are difficult to discuss with others, but here in therapy, can be brought out into the open, so that healing can begin. After each session, you will be asked to complete a brief evaluation of therapy survey. This important tool facilitates a good working relationship and can be a launching pad for some very important conversations. The result is increased opportunities for you to share, be heard, and feel understood.
While you are here to resolve your distress and improve your relationships, it is the most human of responses to resist change. Why? Change can be scary and involves an element of the unknown. We will explore the many good reasons why you may hesitate to let go of your distress, or to take actions that will lead to improved mood, sleep or relationships. After all, the things you have been doing to cope have been helpful to you in many ways, and your emotions reflect your core values and priorities in life. Too, it is a perfectly valid choice to hold on to emotions and behaviors in the face of real struggles. Once we have explored your concerns about the process and outcomes of therapy, we can freely move forward with the many effective tools available for resolving mood, sleep and relationship issues.
The methods we use will include any evidenced based methods that address your unique concerns. In TEAM-CBT we try to "fail as fast as we can," meaning that we try out different methods one by one, until we find the method(s) that work. You will leave therapy knowing which tools were helpful and can then use them on your own to manage your mood and prevent relapse. Dr. Burns' promotes the concept of "tools not schools" of therapy, meaning treatment methods are not limited to CBT or other styles of treatment. I adhere to that same principle in my work with clients. That said, the tools available within the CBT framework are vast and very effective. Let's get started!
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