Cognitive behavioral therapy is a steadfastly relied upon form of therapy treatment for a wide range of mental disorders. The solution-based therapy type helps clients work through their various behavioral issues by identifying the cognitive function, or dysfunction, behind them. Diffusing their emotions and develop a set of skills for coping with their problematic behavior is highly effective. When cognitive behavioral therapy started gaining widespread popularity, there was one group of people with mental illness who did not seem to benefit, those with borderline personality disorder. Borderline personality disorder is defined by shifting moods and personality types- but is not the same as multiple personality or dissociative identity disorder. Instead, those who have borderline are deeply driven by their emotions, defining who they are at any moment by how they feel. What they feel defines what they believe and how they rationalize with any situation. Today, researchers have an understanding that borderline personality disorder grows out of an experience with abandonment in childhood. Abandonment- fears of abandonment, specifically- create deeply irrational behaviors and beliefs which are coupled with extreme emotional states. Working through the thick fog of emotion in borderline is difficult to do. Despite the success of cognitive behavioral therapy, the technique was not penetrating the minds of those with borderline, who were in desperate need of specific therapy and treatment. Dialectical behavioral therapy was designed to pull important tools from cognitive behavioral therapy and other therapeutic techniques to create a specific skill set that would help people with extreme emotional experiences. DBT is not exclusive to people with borderline personality disorder, but is applicable to anyone with extreme emotional states which feel difficult to maintain. The skills in DBT can also be applied in everyday living for emotional regulation and management. DBT designates four unique areas of concentration: Mindfulness, distress tolerance, interpersonal effectiveness, and emotion regulation. Mindfulness helps clients become present and aware during their emotional states, recognizing that their feelings are not facts, but are choices they have the power to choose. Distress tolerance helps clients learn how to tolerate their emotional pain without feeling a compulsive need to change or numb the pain. Interpersonal effectiveness focuses on setting boundaries and using skills for getting needs met. Lastly, emotion regulation includes emotional management in choosing emotions, understanding them, and working through them.
Change your story. Change your life. DBT and other therapy methods help us change our story and make better choices. If you are struggling with addiction and/or mental health, your story can change. Call Oceanfront Recovery today for information on our residential treatment programs for dual diagnosis addiction and mental health: 877.279.1777