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Home / Advice / Counselling / Understanding Cognitive Analytical Therapy

Understanding Cognitive Analytical Therapy

By: Sarah Walsh

Updated: 08 July 2016

Understanding Cognitive Analytical Therapy

It’s not uncommon to feel overwhelmed when taking those first steps into therapy. There are so many different approaches out there and it can be difficult to decide which one is the best fit for you and the difficulties you’re experiencing.

Each week, MyMind will be looking at many different approaches practised by our team of mental health professionals, to give you a better insight into how it works and how it might be helpful.

Cognitive Analytical Therapy encourages clients to draw on their own ability to develop the skills to recognise, understand and change destructive patterns of behaviour.

Negative ways of thinking are explored in structured and directive ways, including diary-keeping and progress charts.

Cognitive Analytical Therapy is a very active form of therapy and is usually short in duration. Although it depends on the individual, a range of CAT sessions could be anywhere from 4-24 sessions with the average being 16. It has been proven effective for both couples and individuals.

It focuses on the destructive behaviour and emphasises the means of coping with this behaviour, highlighting what is a constructive coping mechanism and how to adapt the ineffective methods of coping that may have developed.

Ultimately the client is in control during this type of therapy and it invites them to observe their life from an objective standpoint and observe what needs to change.

As it is a cognitive process, it helps exhibit the client`s capacity to observe their own assumptions, feelings behaviours and thought processes. It can increase positive changes and improve self care, self awareness and relationships with others.

Cognitive Analytical Therapy can be useful for a wide variety different issues, and is often used for the treatment of:

  • Addiction
  • Anxiety
  • Panic attacks
  • Borderline personality disorder (BPD)
  • Depression
  • Dissociative Identity Disorder
  • Histrionic personality disorder
  • Self-harm
  • Survivors of child sexual abuse

See here for more information on the therapeutic approaches available at MyMind or BOOK an appointment with us now.

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