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how does CBT work?

(19 Posts)
ssd Sat 24-Sep-16 13:04:55

am undergoing this but not getting far

how do I stop negative thoughts?

Wonderflonium Sat 24-Sep-16 13:15:40

I did MoodGym when I was struggling, maybe it could boost what you are doing with your therapist?

ssd Sat 24-Sep-16 13:17:58

thanks I will look at that

what I dont get is how can you change your thoughts when they are so automatic?

TodaysAGoodDay Sat 24-Sep-16 13:22:26

I have had CBT twice for different issues. If you feel a certain technique is not helping or is making things worse, then tell your high-intensity counsellor and they can help you try something different.
I think the best advice for you is to stick at it and really practice the techniques as much as you can. Some will take ages to become second nature, but if you really put in the work it will help you eventually. CBT is a very hard, challenging therapy, and those who work at it get the most from it. Sometimes it can make things worse before they get better, but it is so worth it. I have completely stopped worrying about anything (and this is different from being concerned) so all I can say is try to keep at it.
For what it's worth, it feels like I have a completely un-recognisable life now compared to how stressed and anxious I used to be.
Very good luck, stick with it, it does get easier xx

Flamingoteaparty Sat 24-Sep-16 13:23:51

I felt that way too when I started CBT.
Although the automatic thoughts still came, I had to reason with them and over a period they began to subside.
I hope it works for you.

Wonderflonium Sat 24-Sep-16 14:06:56

You got those automatic thoughts from somewhere, though, right? It's about re-training them into something more helpful that also comes automatically. It just takes a lot of practice and patience.

ssd Sat 24-Sep-16 18:41:54

so is it about learning how to deal with those negative thoughts then?

Wonderflonium Sat 24-Sep-16 20:35:50

Yeah, something like that. People have thoughts, feelings and behaviour which all feed into each other. CBT is about addressing unhelpful thoughts, like a way of breaking any vicious cycle and re-wiring the mind's circuitry.

I thought it could never work and was a load of old bollocks but I stuck with the exercises and it did help.

ssd Sat 24-Sep-16 20:47:16

can you tell me a bit about the exercises wonder?

I really really need it just now

Wonderflonium Sat 24-Sep-16 20:57:07

It's on the Mood Gym thing. Sign up and give it a go...

They outline something called "warpy thinking" with several types of unhelpful thought patterns and then they get you to challenge those thoughts in a set of exercises. Like "am I sure this is ALWAYS true? Is it true that I SHOULD do that? Do I REALLY know that this person thinks that about me?"

I also found mindfulness to be a big help but I understand that it's not always a great idea to get into it without someone acting as "ground control". I used the guided meditations from but please talk to your therapist about it, if it's something you think you'd find useful.

Mollmoo Mon 26-Sep-16 22:48:27

I'm finding it helpful. The first couple if sessions seemed pretty pointless, but looking back I guess they were just about getting to know each other and getting to grips with my issues before we could really deal with them. I find the mindfulness exercises good. Also every evening I write down what went well that day and what I'm proud of for that day. It helps me focus on the positive not the negative, and if I'm feeling really negative I can read all my positive thoughts back.
I'm going to look into this mood gym thing now.
Good luck to you all. X

Mollmoo Mon 26-Sep-16 22:50:46

wonder can you tell me more about mood gym before I sign up for it. Thanks.

ssd Tue 27-Sep-16 10:30:07

I singed up for the mood gym, but I didnt find a lot of it related to me

some points I'll take on board though

yoink Tue 27-Sep-16 11:26:30

CBT can work at different levels; you can learn how to notice the NATs that arise to the surface then challenge them. So you're not necessarily stopping them but addressing them once they arrive IYSWIM. You can get to a point where you notice the NAT but don't necessarily believe it, hence the CBT mantra, thoughts are not facts

Sometimes working with the NATS is enough for some people.

Or with a bit of digging around with your therapist, you can work on your underlying core beliefs about yourself, people and the world. This is working at a much deeper level of thought IYSWIM but it is possible to make changes with some time and effort.

If you've been thinking in a certain way for aaaages, it's not going to turn around quickly. It takes practice and thought and time.

I'd also recommend Headspace as pp said above. It really helps with the noticing of thoughts and letting them pass with self-compassion and without judgement.

Mood gym wan't quite right for you, but there might be other stuff out there that's more relevant.

Feel free to PM me if you want anymore info smile

ssd Tue 27-Sep-16 11:29:06


whats a NAT? my therapist used that term but I cant remember what it means

Blue2014 Tue 27-Sep-16 11:35:30

Negative automatic thought (Nat)

It's really normal for this to take time, 1st notice your thoughts for a while, then learn to stand outside and question whether they are really true, then challenge them. It won't feel 'natural' for ages but one day it will smile

ssd Tue 27-Sep-16 16:25:23

thanks, do you mean it will become natural to question my negative thoughts?

SealSong Tue 27-Sep-16 16:37:08

I think you need to be addressing some of these questions to your therapist; it will be helpful if they can slow it down and help you understand the process better.

ssd Tue 27-Sep-16 16:50:04

will do, thanks

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