Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
First Line, Gold Standard Treatment
Though there are many effective therapy treatments to date for a range of issues, CBT comes out as the most researched, most helpful for the widest range of problems, and can be highly personalized.
This triangle reflects no particular order or prioritization.
- A = Affect, or feelings and emotions
- B = Behavior, or actions
- C= Cognition, or thoughts and beliefs
CBT capitalizes on how each of these three domains have strong relationships to each other. The heart of the theory and practice is based on the knowledge that changing one or more of these domains leads to changes in the other. Another way of looking at it is that the more a person lines up their feelings, thoughts, and behaviors with reality, the more they achieve well-being, and many problems can be alleviated.
Exposure Therapy (ET and ERP)
Curated to get you started.
What is Exposure Therapy and How Do You Do It?
Exposure therapy can sound intense. What is it? How is it done? Why is it so effective? Justin K Hughes, MA, LPC explains simply an extremely effective FIRST LINE and “GOLD STANDARD” treatment for anxiety disorders and more.
The 4 Types of Exposure Therapy
Exploring the 4 Types of Exposure Therapy- In Vivo, Imaginal, Interoceptive, and Virtual Reality- Justin offers punctual clarity to the approach of how fears that are being treated can be accessed, whether situationally, in one’s thoughts/imagination, through sensations, or a combination.
"Security is mostly a superstition. It does not exist in nature, nor do the children of men as a whole experience it. Avoiding danger is no safer in the long run than outright exposure."
Specially Curated Resources
These are handpicked, referenced in ACTUAL therapy sessions.(Sorry, I cannot accommodate outside requests to add to resources.)
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Distinguishing Information-Seeking and Reassurance Seeking
This helpful chart is an educational guide separating info-seeking from reassurance.View >
Overcoming Unacceptable Thoughts (Houston OCD)
Check out this presentation by several notable clinicians on “overcoming unacceptable thoughts.”View >
Relapse Prevention in OCD (Shala Nicely)
“As you go into recovery from OCD, it’s good to keep in mind that relapse
prevention is a process, and living how we want to live requires some
“May” or “May Not” Exposure Scripting (Shala Nicely)
“…MOMN statements, which are a type of exposure scripting, can be used with any type of OCD content…because OCD is not about the content!”View >
Exposure and Desensitization (U of Mich)
“We spoke about sensitization in the section “Anxiety Fuel.” Now we’ll talk
about desensitization, which means we work to make our anxiety alarm less
sensitive, so it doesn’t go off as often or as loudly.”
You read that right! Learn to face fears and make it…interesting and fun!View >
Facing Your Fears: Exposure (Anxiety BC)
“An important step in managing anxiety involves facing feared situations, places or
objects. It is normal to want to avoid the things you fear. However, avoidance prevents
you from learning that the things you fear are not as dangerous as you think.”
Key Research Articles on Imaginal Exposure (Science Direct)
“Imaginal exposure refers to patients intentionally confronting specific memories….in their imaginations either by verbally describing … or by writing a description…”View >
Stopping the Noise In Your Head (Dr. Reid Wilson)
“Dr. Reid Wilson proposes a groundbreaking, paradoxical approach to overcoming anxiety, worry, OCD, panic, and phobias by moving away from comfort, confidence, and security and willingly moving toward uncertainty, distress and discomfort.”View >
From My Blog
Related posts from my blog
the OCD Stories: Walking faithfully as a Christian while doing OCD treatment- considerations and common concerns
I once again joined host Stuart Ralph in the OCD Stories podcast. My prior one, “Faith, Spirituality and Religion in OCD Therapy” (#250), led us to go even deeper into the topic, specifically for Christians who have OCD. These bullet points are a very rough draft of what we covered. Here it is: Justin Hughes: Walking faithfully as […]Read More >
How To Use A Functional Assessment (Fast Version)
This is the shortened version of the article, the “PRO Version” available here. Functional Assessment Defined A functional assessment (or analysis, FA) is a framework that clinicians use to assess and plan treatment. It is simply “any empirical demonstration of a cause-effect relation,” its purpose being “to determine which sources of reinforcement account for problem […]Read More >
Where Your Thinking Will Trip You Up In Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD)
Talk therapy is not the way to improve with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD). Talk therapy is also known as “supportive psychotherapy” or insight-oriented therapies. In many cases, these approaches can OCD worse. Writer and actress Lena Dunham shares how she experienced both sides of the street. The Gold Standard of treatment is Exposure and Response Prevention […]Read More >
The 3 D’s in OCD Recovery
In OCD therapy (usually Exposure and Response Prevention, or ERP), I tell clients simplistically there is one thing we are targeting: not compulsing. Of course it’s complex and challenging, but the treatment target itself (when it’s just OCD) is rather simple. However, because OCD is one of the most disabling disorders on the face of […]Read More >
How Alcohol Interferes with Getting Over Your Fears (Hint: It Interrupts Fear Disconfirmation)
The Question It was a good question. Anne* suffered extensively with fear, anxiety, and OCD. She wanted any relief she could find. “Can I drink a little alcohol during exposures?” Little Therapist Justin As an early specialist in OCD, I said to Anne my favorite thing to say when I don’t know: “I don’t know.” […]Read More >
Microsteps- Harnessing Something You Use Everyday To Get You Closer To A Goal
Small changes, over time, lead to big results. Keep Choppin’ If you chop a tree with an axe once per day, you won’t see much progress. Daily for a year and a tree (most) won’t stand a chance. However, we are often limited with black and white, insular thinking (a cognitive distortion), also called “all […]Read More >
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