Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) involves psychotherapeutic techniques to influence problematic and dysfunctional behaviors, emotions and thoughts through a systematic, and goal-oriented procedure. It is based on the idea that our thoughts cause our feelings and behaviors, not external things, like people, situations, and events. The CBT therapy is designed to be short-term in nature.
Dr Chris Williams, a Senior Lecturer in Psychiatry and Honorary Consultant Psychiatrist at the University of Glasgow has developed a computer-based self-help treatment program that targets anxiety, depression and bulimia. National Health Scotland (and Greater Glasgow and Clyde) has provided support for this free web-based initiative, so no more excuses about not being able to afford the money or time.
Why Life Skills?
ImageDistress, low mood and worry are the major mental health problems of the 21st Century and affect more than one in three of us at some time. Treatments are mainly either with antidepressant medication or are psychological (the so-called “talking therapies”).
Psychological treatments are popular and approaches such as Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT) have been shown to be effective however access to specialist therapy services is often limited. There is a need to develop new ways of accessing these psychological treatments that are effective and easily available. The Living Life to the Full course aims to provide easy access to CBT skills – and does so in a way that cuts through jargon. By empowering users to understand why they feel as they do, and to learn new ways of improving how they feel the course aims to provide ready access to key information. The course is based on “Helping people to help themselves”. A crucial element is to inform, educate and teach key life skills. The course is supported by a series of CBT self-help workbooks that can be used between the e-learning sessions. They encourage the reader to put what they are learning into practice, and to stop, think and reflect on what is being learned.
Self-help materials are increasingly available and are popular with the general public and health care practitioners. Any good bookshop is likely to have a significantly sized self-help section. Self-help books are often amongst the top ten best-selling books. In America and Great Britain, a number of self-help materials have been assessed and been shown to be effective. A review of 40 self-help studies from 1974 to 1990 identified that some types of problem such as anxiety and depression are more likely to be amenable to change than others (Gould and Clum, 1993).
The Living Life to the Full course uses this popular self-help format, and also the CBT model which has a proven effectiveness in helping people develop life skills that help them tackle feelings of low mood, stress and distress.
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