Can individual therapy be effective for treating anxiety? Understanding the methodology of different types of therapy is an important first step in answering this question. Certain psychotherapy models, cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) in particular, are utilized over a specific period of time with a particular goal in mind.
This is in contrast to general therapy or psychoanalysis, which could continue for years and have fluid goals that fluctuate from session to session. The goal of CBT, one of the most common forms of individual therapy for anxiety, is to modify thought patterns that contribute to unwanted behaviors.
What is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy?
Cognitive behavioral therapy is founded on the premise that our behaviors are responses to our thoughts, rather than responses to external events. CBT posits that, because thought patterns are developed over time, people can isolate and unlearn negative thought patterns.
After a positive pattern of thinking is established, negative reactions can diminish or cease entirely. With the help of a therapist, CBT breaks down symptoms of anxiety into smaller, more manageable problems. Doing so allows a patient and therapist to work together to resolve the smaller issues.
The way CBT therapy works for treating anxiety is to first identify issues that trigger symptoms. The patient and a therapist go through the process of isolating and identifying negative thoughts associated with feelings of anxiety. Then, they work towards replacing those thoughts with more positive thinking patterns, which in turn contributes to positive behavioral changes.
Will Individual Therapy Help With Anxiety?
Feelings and thoughts of anxiety cause people to react in a variety of ways, many of which can be unhealthy and destructive. Individual therapy using the CBT model helps people replace negative thoughts with positive ones in order to modify behaviors, which has proven to provide significant benefits for people suffering from anxiety.
However, in order for counseling to yield positive results, it’s important to work with a trained therapist that is experienced in the CBT approach. Helping the patient to identify and practice new, positive ways of thinking is how mental health professionals help to encourage positive, lasting change.
Some of the things patients can expect from anxiety counseling sessions include:
- Identify negative thinking patterns
- Acknowledge perceived threats versus real threats
- Identify healthier, more positive thinking patterns
- Practice alternative approaches for handling triggers and symptoms
Even though cognitive behavioral therapy for anxiety takes time and effort, it has the potential to substantially reduce symptoms and improve a person’s quality of life. With dedication and perseverance, individual therapy for anxiety can and does benefit many people.
If you’re looking for anxiety counseling in Boca Raton, consider Morgan Center for Counseling and Wellbeing. To learn more or to schedule an appointment, please contact Morgan Center or call 561-717-2900.