'A light to help you on your journey of health' Directors: Drs Martin & Sue Allbright
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What is Cognitive Behavioural Therapy?

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) is a scientifically proven talking therapy that can help people with a wide range of difficulties. It is a structured and time limited.

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Fees Cognitive Behavioural Therapist Compassion Focussed Therapy CFT Regulation & Code of Ethics

CBT focuses on how your thoughts, beliefs and attitudes affect your feelings and behaviours and vice versa! It involves slowing down and tuning into your day to day experience so you can identify what is helpful and healthy and what is fuelling emotional difficulties or unhelpful patterns of behaviour.

Regulation and Code of Ethics

Therapists have a continuing commitment to best practice and regularly attend workshops and Courses which support their professional development and contribute to their ongoing Accreditation and Registration. They receive regular Supervision, from a BABCP Accredited Clinical Psychologist and Peer Reviewed ACT Trainer.

As an Accredited member of the British Association of Behavioural and Cognitive Therapists and the Nursing and Midwifery Council, the work is underpinned by the Professional Standards of Conduct and Ethics outlined by these established organisations. Bridget is also a member of the Association for Contextual and Behavioural Scientists, which enables her to develop her practice within the ACT model.

She also has an Enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service Status

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Cognitive Behavioural Therapist - CBT

Bridget Maddison

Ways of working An example of CBT benefits Acceptance Commitment Therapy ACT

Ways of Working

At the beginning of the therapy, you and your Therapist will take time to explore your current difficulties in order to develop a shared understanding of your problem. Together you will consider what patterns of thoughts, feelings and behaviours might be causing or maintaining your distress and consider alternative ways of handling your experience. In the early sessions you will establish your hopes for therapy and build these into identifiable goals which relate to behavioural change. This will take account of your ‘bigger picture’ or what is important in you.

Skills and strategies learned in sessions will be reinforced through set between session tasks, ready for further reflection and fine tuning when you return.

All sessions are different but can involve: Experiential or Mindfulness-based exercises, Visualisation exercises, Perspective taking exercises, Behavioural experiments, mapping out cycles or exploring metaphors, watching brief You-Tube Videos, Guided discovery, Reflecting on logs and worksheets, Behavioural Activation, Graded Exposure, Psycho-education and more.

CBT is all about coaching people to become their own therapist, so towards the end of therapy you may develop a Wellbeing Plan, to include handling setbacks and promoting emotional resilience.

The qualities of compassion, curiosity, courage and openness are integral to Third Wave CBT methods and central to the relationship between Therapist, Client and the difficulties being explored.

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Here is an example of CBT working.

Perhaps you’ve been invited to meet up with some Colleagues after work, but you don’t know them so well and during the day you start to worry about how it will go, how will you cope, will you say something stupid or get left out of the conversation? You start to feel anxious and your mind begins to convince you it would be better to go straight home and come up with some excuse. Although initially it’s a big relief, later you get caught up with some self-critical thoughts about cancelling and feel fed up. You even begin to predict how it will be in the morning if they are talking about the evening out.

If this was just a one off of course, it wouldn’t be a problem but if you kept reacting to social outings in this way you might begin to feel isolated and low.

This is just one example of how CBT could help you overcome a pattern of behaviour that isn’t helping you live the life you would prefer. By helping you to identify the thoughts, feelings, urges and everyday reactions that aren’t helping, we can begin to build new skills and strategies to get you where you want to go. To manage your anxiety, boost your mood and build your confidence.

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Growing in popularity due to its effectiveness and adaptability are what is called ‘3rd Wave CBT which includes ACT and Compassion Focused Therapy

What Is Acceptance and Commitment Therapy?

Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (pronounced like the word not A.C.T!) ACT is a Third Wave form of CBT sharing many of the above principles but adds some extra dimensions:

Act is underpinned by a growing body of scientific evidence showing its effectiveness for many psychological problems and challenges. With its roots in Behavioural Science and Learning Theory, ACT highlights how our problematic ‘survival wiring’, means we can put a lot of effort into avoiding difficult thoughts, feelings and physical sensations. We might avoid situations that are anxiety provoking, put off doing things that matter or just keep busy. We try and ‘fix’ our thinking by being ‘rational’, having ‘positive’ thoughts or just overthinking everything. Sometimes ‘escape’ may be through food, alcohol or modern world distractions. These self-defeating patterns of behaviour can drain our resources, leave us living on ‘auto-pilot’ or make us feel like we are just existing. At times the frustration of it all can leave us feeling hopeless and overwhelmed.

ACT teaches mindfulness and acceptance skills to target difficult thoughts and feelings so they have much less impact and influence. This enables us to Commit (the ‘C’ in ACT) to doing more of the things that give life meaning and purpose, which generally increases a sense of wellbeing and resilience. This is called ‘Psychological Flexibility’. If you are unsure of your values, ACT includes helpful ways to clarify or reconnect with your ‘bigger picture’.

ACT is unique is distinguishing between ‘you’ and your ‘mind’, this trainable skill, enables you to access your ‘on board companion’ or the part of you that can notice your experience. This can be an empowering skill.

ACT can be a helpful for: depression, anxiety, stress, emotional regulation skills, managing long term health conditions, relationship difficulties, building self-acceptance to boost self-esteem, adjusting to loss, binge eating, coming to terms with change.

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What is Compassion Focused Therapy?

Compassion-focused therapy (CFT) aims to help promote mental and emotional healing by encouraging people in treatment to be compassionate toward themselves and other people. It is another member of the wider family of Cognitive Behavioural Therapies and was founded by Professor Paul Gilbert.

Like ACT, CFT emphasises the inherent difficulty of our evolved Tricky Brains which can make us our own worst critic. Compassion Focused Therapy is particularly relevant to those who experience feelings of shame or guilt and self-critical thinking. Many people feel able to respond in a kindly and supportive fashion to others but struggle to motivate themselves in this way. Although the word Compassion makes us think of qualities like kindness and warmth, this approach also places great emphasis on the strength and courage it takes to engage with our suffering and do something about it. CFT presents Compassion as a skill that can be developed and nurtured through Compassionate Focused Exercises and Practice.

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CBT is a proactive approach, ensuring that by the end of Therapy you will have developed new skills and knowledge to enable you to respond wisely to life’s ups and downs. CBT tends to be more focused on the present but can refer to the past to better understand how it impacts on the here and now.

CBT is recommended in the NICE Guidelines (National Institute for Clinical Excellence) as an effective treatment for Anxiety based problems (Health Anxiety, OCD, Panic, Phobias, PTSD, Social Anxiety) and Depression. It has also been found to be effective for stress management, relationship difficulties and self-confidence.

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