I am scheduled to begin cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), tomorrow afternoon.
I would like to hear back from those of you that have participated in CBT, what is it all about, and has it helped you with your anxiety/panic attacks/depression.
Any responses would be greatly appreciated.
Thanks so much... Chuck
I think the most important lesson I have gained from my previous CBT (Cognitive Behavior Therapy) training is to focus on the present. When my thoughts get sidetracked and I fall into an anxious state again, I have to find a way, with my CBT training, to let the past go, and to live and see life from the present moment. Usually my anxiety gets triggered from some past episode, at least for me, and I just keep ruminating it over and over, and I need to stop it.
One important lesson I've learned from CBT training is to not over intellectualize the written exercises that I engange in. After finishing a CBT exercise, my primary focus is to just feel better, and less so in understanding where my anxiety came from.
I say this because it's a trap for anxiety disorder sufferers to intellectualize how their past formed thier now. This is a trait we all picked up from psychology classes, as well as endorsed by Sigmund Freud, support groups, well-meaning counselors, and the self-help books market. We have been almost programmed to dwell on how our past, particularly our early childhood development, affected how we function as adults. Due to our self-analysis, we then intellectualize how our psyches have been tarnished from past experiences. We have a good self -analysis of our internal issues, but we haven't solved our anxiety problem, just added more psychological insight.
The past is over. What's important is how we feel now, not in how we felt then, in the past. The more we discuss the past then the more we just create it in our experience. So when approaching CBT exercises, don't get stuck in past self-analysis, just focus on feeling better, now. If you can forget the past, and just improve the way you feel, now, regardless of the past, I think your doing your CBT exercises properly.
Of course theses insights have just been my experiences. I am in now way endorsing my CBT views on anyone else on this forum, but I hope some of that insight helps.