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What is... psychology series

What Is… CBT for Chronic Pain

In this series, I dig a little deeper into the meaning of psychology-related terms.  This week's term is cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) for pain. While initially, the idea of a psychological form of treatment for a physical problem may sound a bit odd at first, it makes more sense when you consider how inextricably connected… Continue reading What Is… CBT for Chronic Pain

drilling into block of wood
Mental health

Drilling Down to Core Beliefs

Core beliefs are the underlying beliefs that we have about the self, others, and world, as well as the future.  They arise as a result of the experiences we've been through, including trauma.  Forms that core beliefs take They are held as absolutes, and tend to be expressed using words like "always" or "never".  They… Continue reading Drilling Down to Core Beliefs

woman sleeping in bed
Mental health

CBT for Insomnia

Sleep - so important to have, yet sometimes so hard to get (find out more in What Is... Sleep).  Whether it's depression where you're exhausted but can't sleep or mania where you have too much energy to feel the need for sleep, insomnia is something that spans across diagnoses.   For many of us, medications… Continue reading CBT for Insomnia

multicolored letters of the alphabet floating in a pool
Mental health

Psychotherapy Alphabet Soup

Some studies have shown that the quality of the therapeutic relationship between client and therapist is a stronger predictor of therapeutic outcomes than the type of therapy used.  However, it seems logical that the type of therapy should at least to some extent match up with how you tend to conceptualize the problems you're experiencing.… Continue reading Psychotherapy Alphabet Soup

woman sitting in dark room with light shining through blinds
Mental health

To Avoid Or Not to Avoid: Coping With Mental Illness

Xavier Sotomayor on Unsplash Sometimes avoidance is adaptive.  If we see a mama bear and her cubs, we know we need to steer clear.  This is when our caveman brain is programmed to kick into fight or flight mode, and we probably never would have moved far beyond the caves without it.  But a lot… Continue reading To Avoid Or Not to Avoid: Coping With Mental Illness

person writing in a notebook
Mental health

Free Mental Health Workbooks

There are a lot of excellent mental health resources out there, and quite a few of them are actually free. Here are some of the good mental health workbooks and worksheets that I've come across. They're based on therapeutic approaches that have proven to be effective. Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) ACT for Anxiety Disorders… Continue reading Free Mental Health Workbooks

thoughts-feelings-actions infographic
Mental health

Cognitive Distortions: Getting Personal

In yesterday's post, I outlined some of the common types of cognitive distortions.  It's one thing to know about them, but actually recognizing them in ourselves can be a lot harder to do.  It's all well and good to try to look for evidence against a possibly distorted thought, but what if there is a… Continue reading Cognitive Distortions: Getting Personal

thoughts-feelings-actions infographic
Mental health

Cognitive distortions in CBT

I'm sure many of you are already familiar with cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), but I thought it was still worth taking a look at cognitive distortions, a key ingredient in the CBT soup.  When we're not well (and even when we are well) we tend to fall into certain common thinking traps.  Recognizing that we're… Continue reading Cognitive distortions in CBT