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What is your experience with cognitive behavioral therapy? Did it help? Was it good? Or was it a waste of your time?
 

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Time Lord
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I'm just starting with it for depression
part of me says "this is a load of ****"
but the other part of me says "this makes a lot of sense"
I have found that it makes me more depressed to think about how my own thoughts and behaviours have made me this way
maybe it will work out though (see, see??! I'm trying to think positively! lol)
 

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It works, but it takes time. It took years for us to begin thinking the way we did.
 

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It can be very, very helpful for certain problems for certain people. It depends on the person and where their mind is. Sometimes it can make a dent right away, but with other people it can take a long time.

For me, it helped with not feeling suicidal in response to rejection. But has it cured my SA so i "have the guts" to go out and get a job? No. :no But I keep trying to do new behaviors to get better. I'm just not all the way there.

A book I read was Feeling Good by Dr. David Burns, and the chapter was Approval Addiction. This helped me so much. It changed my perspective. But the rest of the book, it turns out, wasn't so influential on me...But I wouldn't say it was a waste of time. If you get anything out of it, it will be worth it!

CBT is something that can be tried on your own, but it's probably better to try it out and learn it with a therapist! Good luck! :D
 

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What is your experience with cognitive behavioral therapy? Did it help? Was it good? Or was it a waste of your time?
its brilliant becasue it explains exactly how sa works and it treats sa right at the root cause - your thinking . but it needs to combined with unconcious programming like hypnosis, nlp and thinkrightnow
 

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I'm 4 sessions in and i'm frustrated with it. I can't bring myself to deliberately 'expose' myself to the situations that make me anxious. The therapist says he cant help me till i do this - and reach some conclusions as part of these experiments as to why I end up on this anxiety spiral.

i'm giving up on it for now. Maybe I will return to it at some point...

Do the rest of you not have a similar problem ie. in determining how you get from being in a normal state to being in a heightened state of anxiety?? Its such a chain reaction for me...i can't break it down like that. I'm in it before i have chance to analyse exactly how it started...for the very reason that i'm in the process of getting into that state, im in no fit position to calmly rationalise what initial thoughts led me to spiral into anxiety hell..
 

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Do the rest of you not have a similar problem ie. in determining how you get from being in a normal state to being in a heightened state of anxiety?? Its such a chain reaction for me...i can't break it down like that. I'm in it before i have chance to analyse exactly how it started...for the very reason that i'm in the process of getting into that state, im in no fit position to calmly rationalise what initial thoughts led me to spiral into anxiety hell..
I've found "Emotional Alchemy" by Tara Bennett-Goleman to be helpful. She defines the automatic chain of emotional reactions as emotional schemas (maladaptive emotional habits triggered by certain situations). She says that cultivating mindfulness, or the practice of becoming aware of your thoughts, feelings, sensations, etc. on a moment to moment basis will allow you to notice when your schemas have been triggered. She suggests meditating to cultivate mindfulness.

So far I've found the practice quite useful. I'm now more aware of when I start feeling socially excluded, and when I do I just accept the feelings, recognize that it's just my emotional schema being triggered and deliberately do something productive, e.g., talk to someone (well, some of the time anyway).
 

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Starting CBT

Hi Im starting CBT on sept 11th it sounds somewhat encouraging what you guys are saying. I sure hope it helps good luck to everybody
 

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it sounds simular to automatic negative thaughts or ants as Dr. Thomas Richard puts it.
he says if we can catch our ants we can say stop I dont want to go in this direction I choose to go in a healthy direction
 

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A 20 week CBT group based on Dr. Richards therapy was the beginning in a long adventure making big changes in how I feel and how I live my life. It requires courage, persistence and time.
 

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on line course

Good to here Drew I only have His online course and cant get to him and dont have the money I am starting CBT next week with someone near my home I hope it helps??
 

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Good to here Drew I only have His online course and cant get to him and dont have the money I am starting CBT next week with someone near my home I hope it helps??
I actually didn't take the CBT group with Dr. Richards, but instead one of his former students. I was in San Francisco at the time.

Are you doing group CBT or individual with a therapist? Either way, it can be very helpful.

Let us know how it goes!
 

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A 20 week CBT group based on Dr. Richards therapy was the beginning in a long adventure making big changes in how I feel and how I live my life. It requires courage, persistence and time.
Yep, I am currently on week 14. It's been just months and a **** load of my irrational thinking/anxiety is gone. CBT is the way, its the truth. It's the only real kind of therapy, but as many mentioned it takes PERSISTENCE. Not even courage, just persistence. Sometimes, you'll be like, "wow, who is this new me?" I love it.

IT DOESNT TAKE YEARS. It may take years to get the anxiety to be completely dead, but you will start getting "normal" in months if you are persistent.

Basically, you have that old anxiety neural pathway in your brain that questions your progress and efforts, but there is another side (probably a bit faint to you at the time), that says, yo, hold up, hey, we gonna rock this to the break of dawn, take a seatttt and start the next episodeee. heyyy heyy hey heyy

The more time you invest in your rational/new neural pathway, the more you practice the affirmations and techniques in anxiety-tinged situations, the faster you progress will come. Remember: you wont fail, only if you give up TOTALLY. Hang in there, you stick to CBT and I promise you will blossom that beautiful person inside of you thats waiting to make a mark on the world.

The best thing about CBT is that it makes you a much stronger person, it makes you a juggernaut because you can apply the techniques to better yourself in basketball, sex, school, studying, everything.

The truth shall set you free, don't let go!

BTW, I wanted to add that, yes you probably developed those negative thoughts and feelings through many years. But a rational, truthful statement is ALWAYS stronger than a lie, so the therapy is going to brainwash your brain much faster than the negativity did.
 

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to Shulgin

Shulgin: You wrote "4 sessions in and i'm frustrated with it. I can't bring myself to deliberately 'expose' myself to the situations that make me anxious."
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I'm concerned that you are being forced to do something you are not ready for.

I did the Dr. Richard's course and we did the CBT with many weeks of cognitive work first before putting the behavioral component in there with cognitive work as to the behaviors on each step. I think there were 10-14 weeks of pure cognitive work before we attempted any behavioral work . The behavioral work broke down what the goal was into a step by step approach. You created a hierarchy that broke down the behavior. Let's say your goal was to make small talk. As someone with severe SA I first did cognitive work, then took a first step to practice eye contact in a safe therapy group. I then did cognitive work to reinforce the positive experience of the practice eye contact. Then I'd bring it out to the real world the next weeks to look at people I know (eye contact) and smile (then do reinforcing cognitive work). The next week or so (when I'm ready for the next step) I might pass by and say hello as I look at people and smile, then the next week when I'm ready I might up it a notch and say hello, how are you? then the next week or so when ready I might approach someone say hello how are you and find something to compliment them on....etc until I get to approaching someone and making small talk. From there you could continue to build it to giving an opinion, giving a short talk, or giving a long talk on a topic. Each step of the way you do cognitive work related to the behavior at each step.

Without the cognitive work foundation, I don't understand how you can begin the behavioral components. Without breaking down the behaviors and doing cognitive work each step of the way, I fear you are exposing yourself to harmful experiences that will keep you trapped in SA.
 

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^ Same here (concerning the last paragraph). A lot depends on the therapist. One I had was good at delivering the CBT, but another concentrated on the behavioural alone. Both were NHS therapists.

The former therapist was very flexible and provided counselling in addition to CBT. She also provided extra time when needed. I would work through several sheets and she would take on my suggestions for new ones. Having worked on CBT in workbooks and therapy, I now have some useful tools. However, CBT, like any tool, can be incorrectly applied; therefore, in therapy, an insightful, flexible therapist is essential.

The latter therapist told me he was a behaviourist, which I wasn't impressed with because I'd been referred for CBT. Each session would consist of him getting me to tell him what I avoided. I would list tasks such as phonecalls and shopping. Without providing advice or any assistance with working through the cognitions, he would simply get me to state my goals for the week, which essentially boiled down to just doing the tasks I'd listed. If I could have just done them, I wouldn't have needed therapy. He would kick me out the door after as little as 10 minutes into a session. He believed, and stated, that helping people with SA was his passion. Maybe he just didn't like me that much.
 

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What is your experience with cognitive behavioral therapy? Did it help? Was it good? Or was it a waste of your time?
It was a waste of time and money for me.

My brain chemistry just needs help. All of overthinking of what people thought of me dwindled.

Now, I'm a walking corpse. hehehhee
 

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I'm 4 sessions in and i'm frustrated with it. I can't bring myself to deliberately 'expose' myself to the situations that make me anxious. The therapist says he cant help me till i do this - and reach some conclusions as part of these experiments as to why I end up on this anxiety spiral.

i'm giving up on it for now. Maybe I will return to it at some point...

Do the rest of you not have a similar problem ie. in determining how you get from being in a normal state to being in a heightened state of anxiety?? Its such a chain reaction for me...i can't break it down like that. I'm in it before i have chance to analyse exactly how it started...for the very reason that i'm in the process of getting into that state, im in no fit position to calmly rationalise what initial thoughts led me to spiral into anxiety hell..
so what he's saying is:
in order for him to help you get the ability to expose yourself to these situation, you must get the ability to expose yourself to these situations on your own.
 

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First CBT

I just finished my first CBT session it was OK I guess I am going to go back she claims she can cure me ????? Its not group its one on one She is usig what she calls cutting edge only I have forgotten what she called it or I would google it anyway She says the next session is really important because that is when she introduces this so called cutting edge theropy on Oct. 2nd if its any good I will cetainly let you all know.
 
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