Psychological Counseling and Emotional Well-Being
Cognitive Behavior Therapy, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy and EMDR
My clinical practice consists of 3 therapeutic approaches: Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT), Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), EMDR Therapy and Mindfulness.
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
Cognitive Behavior Therapy (Cognitive Behavior Therapy) is a structured psychotherapy based on empirical and scientific psychological knowledge. This therapeutic approach is based on the cognitive model: the main assumption of this model is that the way individuals perceive a situation is more determinant of their reaction than the situation itself.
According to the cognitive model, thoughts are more decisive in terms of how we react emotionally to a situation than the situation itself. Cognitive behavior therapy works on our dysfunctional beliefs and mental patterns with the aim of modifying behavior and automatic thoughts, leading to an improvement in emotional state and quality of life.
This therapeutic approach is considered the gold standard in psychotherapy by the World Health Organization, mainly for anxiety and depression disorders. An important part of Cognitive Behavior Therapy is to help patients discover what they most want in their life and move towards their purposes.
Skills are developed to modify thinking and behavior in order to achieve lasting improvements in mood, cognitive functioning and general feeling of well-being. Cognitive Behavior Therapy uses a variety of cognitive and behavioral techniques, but it is not defined solely by the use of these strategies.
Along with it, we use many psychotherapeutic modalities, including Dialectical Behavior Therapy, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, Gestalt Therapy, Compassion Focused Therapy, Mindfulness, Solution Focused Therapy, Motivational Interviewing, Positive Psychology, Interpersonal Psychotherapy and Psychodynamics.
Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT)
Acceptance and Commitment Therapy has in its own name its definition and its main purpose: accept what is beyond your personal control and commit yourself to actions that improve and enrich your life. ACT's goal is to improve the human potential for a rich, full and meaningful life. ACT (which is pronounced as the word "act" ) aims to:
Develop psychological skills to deal effectively with distressing thoughts and emotions - so that they have less impact and influence on your experience. Psychological flexibility is the term that best defines this type of skill worked in ACT.
Clarify and outline what really matters in your experience and what is truly meaningful to you in your life - that is, your personal values, the purposes that move you in your own life and in your goals - and thus learn to use them like a compass, training your mind to use that knowledge to guide, inspire and motivate you to change your life for the better.
ACT seeks to develop psychological flexibility. It is a form of behavioral therapy that combines skills of mindfulness with the practice of self-acceptance.
In this type of therapy we look for ways of developing the commitment to face the problem head on instead of looking for chronic subterfuge as a way of avoiding to deal with conflicting emotions.
This is also a form of empirical psychotherapy based on evidence and very suitable for anxiety and depression disorders, obsessive-compulsive disorder, addictions and chemical dependency.
EMDR (Desensitization and Reprocessing by Eye Movements) is a psychotherapy that allows people to heal themselves from the symptoms and emotional suffering resulting from disturbing life experiences.
Studies show that, with EMDR therapy, results that would have taken years of conventional psychotherapy to implement are possible, particularly in cases of anxiety disorder, phobias and post-traumatic stress.
It is generally agreed that psychological distress due to trauma and emotionally more severe situations requires a lot of time to heal. EMDR therapy, on the other hand, shows that the mind can heal itself from psychological trauma in the same way that the body recovers from physical trauma.When you cut your hand, your body works to close the wound. When there is something that prevents this wound from healing, it hurts and hurts continuously. Once the disturbance to this healing process stops and whatever is preventing the healing is removed, healing happens naturally.
EMDR therapy demonstrates that something similar occurs with our mental processes. The brain`s information processing system naturally tends towards mental health. If this system is blocked or unbalanced by the impact of a disturbing event, emotional distress is aggravated and can cause a very intense level of psychological distress.
Using EMDR therapy protocols and procedures, the therapist assists the patient in activating their natural psychic rehabilitation processes. This type of therapeutic approach is very suitable for post-traumatic stress disorders, anxiety and depression disorders, phobias, traumas, abuse and painful memories.
Although mindfulness has only recently been adopted by Western psychology, it is an age-old practice found in a wide range of Eastern philosophies, including Buddhism, Taoism and yoga.
Mindfulness involves becoming aware of your experience of the here and now with openness, curiosity and flexibility. Jon Kabat-Zinn, a world authority on the use of mindfulness training in the management of clinical problems, defines mindfulness as follows: "Paying attention in a specific way: with purpose, in the present moment and without judgment".
Mindfulness involves being awake and connected with yourself, enjoying the fullness of each moment of life. Kabat-Zinn calls this "the art of living consciously". It is a profound way to increase psychological and emotional resilience and satisfaction with life.