Cognitive Behavioural therapy CBT

CBT Warrington

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT)


Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, or CBT for short, was developed by Aaron T Beck in the 1960’s.
It combined theory and practice of both Cognitive Therapy and Behavioural Therapy and today, it is the treatment of choice used by the NHS for treating anything from anxiety disorders, to depression.
The reason that NICE (The national institute of clinical excellence) and the NHS invest so much in this particular therapy, is that is backed up with years of clinical study as being the most effective short term treatment.
It has much more evidence of it’s efficacy to help with emotional problems, than say, Hypnosis or NLP. This doesn’t mean that hypnosis or NLP doesn’t work, nor any of the other psychotherapies. It’s merely because it has so much evidence behind it, backed up with high success rates.

CBT (cognitive behavioural therapy) can help with a number of issues such as:

  • Anxiety Disorders (including Panic Attacks and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder)
  • Fears and Phobias
  • Depression and mood disorders
  • Obsessive Compulsive Disorder or OCD for short.
  • Chronic Fatigue
  • Anger Management
  • Insomnia and other related sleep disorders
  • Behavioural Difficulties in children
  • Anxiety Disorders in children
  • Stress
  • Chronic Pain
  • Physical Symptoms without a medical diagnosis

In a nutshell, it aims to help an individual overcome their worries and anxieties by getting them to challenge their way of thinking, and then, challenge their behaviours to form a new and more helpful way of thinking, followed by a modified way of behaving.

Here is an example of this is:

Mary is a worrier; she has been invited to a party at the weekend. She begins to worry about the party by thinking, “what if no one wants to speak to me…. What if they see I look so nervous and laugh at me? What if I say something really stupid and the think that I am stupid?”

Mary gets so worked up on the lead up to the party that she feels anxious and sick, so she cancels the party and doesn’t go. This makes her feel a little better.

Here, you can see that Mary is thinking very negatively about the party. She is making stuff up about what she feels will happen at the party, she doesn’t actually know this will happen because its in the future, it is merely worry. This is the thinking that needs to be challenged.
The behavioural aspect of this story is that Mary avoided going to the party to reduce her anxiety.

Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) would help Mary address her worries by looking into the evidence of her thoughts and teach her a more helpful and rational way of thinking to reduce her worry and thus reduce the anxiety enough for her to still go to the party.

The therapist may ask questions such as, “Mary, can you tell me a time when you where at a party, and someone did laugh at you?” or, “Can you tell me about a time when you said something really stupid?”

The aim here is to check the evidence of what Mary is basing her fears on. 9 times out of 10, the worry is based on complete fiction. It’s just that, with worry, we tend to believe what we worry about as soon as we have a thought.
This triggers the amygdala in the brain, which is our ‘red alert’ system of threat and danger. This then causes anxiety.
Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) is designed to get you to challenge your thoughts and your behaviours so that the amygdala desensitises itself from threat and you create a more balanced perspective.
I will show you how to challenge your thoughts and behaviours so that you start to feel much more in control. You stop thinking the negative thoughts and the negative behaviours decrease.

CBT is an excellent therapeutic approach that is very adaptable to each individual. And the aspect I like the most about CBT is its ability to teach the client how to become his or her own therapist!

Once this is learned, the client can apply the techniques in any future occasion.

If you are looking at using Cognitive behavioural therapy to help you with your emotions then please just drop me a line and we can have an initial chat about how I could help you overcome your worries, fears and stresses.


Shackleton Close, Old Hall, Warrington, Cheshire, WA5 9QE