Your feelings affect your behavior and thoughts. Your thoughts do the same to your feelings and behavior. And the latter, well, it does the same thing to thoughts and feelings. During addiction all three of these things become out of sync. You’ll experience fluctuations in feelings, thoughts, and behavior which lead to a series of issues. For this reason cognitive behavioral therapy is necessary to deal with such imbalances. What is cognitive behavioral therapy? It’s a therapeutic technique that can harness the power of this triangle to change patterns.
What is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy?
Cognitive behavioral therapy seeks to help clients change the way that they act in particular situations. During the course of addiction therapy, this means avoiding specific situations that result in drug use. The behavior-thoughts-feelings triangle comes into play because there’s always one component that’s easy to change. During a cognitive intervention, the therapist helps to determine which element is the easiest to influence in order to prevent further substance abuse.
Someone with an alcohol problem might rationalize that a bad day at work merits a visit to the bar. There needs to be a change to avoid getting back into a situation where using will happen. The therapist can now appeal to a transformation of thought, feelings, or action. Perhaps the individual can reason that the day wasn’t as bad as others, and therefore, there’s no need to use.
Maybe a possible behavior change turns a trip to the bar into a visit to the juice bar. It depends on the client’s most controllable facet of the triangle. Of course, cognitive behavioral therapy is a lot more involved than this example. There are also issues of black and white thinking, faulty reasoning, fatalism, and similar patterns to undo.
How Does Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Integrate with Other Therapies?
Psychotherapy is only one approach to helping someone struggling with drug addiction. Social stressors, inflexible coping mechanisms, and trouble relating to peers make recovery more difficult. At Crest View Recovery Center in North Carolina, however, our reality therapy model makes it possible to address many of these problems in the process of counseling. Examples of possible approaches include:
- Comprehensive clinical care that emphasizes avenues of healing
- 12-Step meetings that provide access to peer support and group cohesion
- Rehab treatment program and a subsequent intensive outpatient program that maintains treatment continuity
- Opportunities for real-life activities that program participants to help individuals develop post-treatment coping strategies
By intertwining the tenets of cognitive behavioral therapy with other treatments, clients get comfortable using the new tools they learn. Trying them out on a daily basis is an excellent way of achieving change.
Get Help for an Addiction Today!
In the end, what is cognitive behavioral therapy? It’s an approach that could help you or a loved one overcome a substance abuse problem. If you or someone in your life has been struggling with self-defeating thoughts, negative feelings, or self-sabotaging behaviors, our therapists can help. Contact Crest View Recovery Center today at 866.327.2505 for more information.