Sean F. Kelly, Ph.D.
About CBT
 
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How Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) Works
People do not try to have problems.  They try to solve problems.  So why do they have problems?

Think of someone who regularly travels from one place to another.  He always goes via the same route.  Originally he chose it because it was the best way to get there.  Now he goes that way because that is how he is used to going. 

There may be a better route and he just does not know about it, or thinks it is not open to him, or perhaps the old way is simply a habit.  In any case, he is traveling today's journey via yesterday's roads. 

Many times people handle situations the way they always have, and sometimes that is a problem.  Sometimes they do not even know it is a problem, much less that there is a better way available to solve it now. 

Old habits, old learning and old instincts get one to repeat the old ways of handling things. 

But we have the intelligent part of the brain, the part that is capable of new learning, available to use to find new, superior ways to attack problems.

In a scene from a movie, Indiana Jones was confronted in a bazaar by a gigantic man with a huge sword, who threatened to hack Indy to pieces.  Indy's first thought was to find a sword to fight him, but then he used his brain, not his instincts.  He smiled, shrugged, pulled out his pistol and shot the giant.

CBT teaches people to think of better solutions