CBT Therapist in Chicago
CBT is highly effective in treating depression, anxiety, stress, ADHD and many other problems.
People often seek out individual therapy when they feel stuck and want to make changes to their life. The problem with making these changes on your own is that we often see the world in inaccurate and distorted ways and recognizing these mistakes is challenging. We act according to our misperceptions and develop habits and behaviors that strengthen these faulty beliefs. Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) helps people to develop a more realistic mindset, in which they can create new actions and more positive responses to challenging situations. If CBT therapy seems like a good fit for you, our expert CBT therapists are ready to support you today.
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is a type of psychotherapy focused on learning and applying cognitive (mental) and behavioral (action) skills. The ways that we act and how we feel are largely governed by how we see the world – our assumptions, beliefs, perceptions, and biases. While this usually serves us well, at times, we misjudge reality. These errors lead to anxiety, depression, and other problems.
Our faulty mental models are actually creating patterns that hold us back. A CBT therapist can help you learn to recognize misperceptions and challenge them. Behaviors and habits that keep you stuck will be identified and your CBT therapist will work with you to develop action plans to change your behaviors. The goal is to develop awareness of your internal experiences so that they don’t stop you from building the life that you want.
CBT is a skills-focused and action-oriented approach. You will work collaboratively with your CBT therapist to develop skills that help you achieve specific goals. While the CBT therapy sessions are important, you will continue to work on your goals outside of sessions via homework and assigned exercises. CBT therapists will often monitor changes with ongoing assessments and will work with you collaboratively, so that your goals are the focus of therapy.
CBT is a practical, present-focused approach that quickly and concretely helps make changes to your life.
CBT is an evidence based treatment for many conditions, including:
- Improve sleep and reduce insomnia
- Regulate emotions when in distress
- Cope with stress
- Reduce relationship anxiety
- Manage grief and loss
- Address premature ejaculation and erectile dysfunction
- Enhance self-esteem and problems relating to others
- Prevent relapse from alcohol or other drugs
- Adapt to chronic illness and physical pain
- Manage anger and irritability
An abundance of research indicates the effectiveness of CBT therapy for the treatment of depression. In depression therapy, the CBT therapist incorporates the CBT triangle as a comprehensive framework for individual therapy, targeting negative thinking patterns and maladaptive behaviors. Through cognitive restructuring, individuals challenge distorted thoughts, replacing them with realistic perspectives. Behavioral activation encourages engagement in meaningful activities to enhance mood and self-esteem. Coping skills training equips individuals with tools to manage emotions, solve problems, and improve relationships. This integrated approach empowers individuals to alleviate symptoms of depression, develop resilience, and foster long-term psychological well-being.
Our individual therapists are skilled and experienced at CBT therapy, either exclusively practicing from this perspective, or incorporating CBT principles and strategies into their work.
CBT is widely researched and profoundly effective. Of the many conditions that it’s shown to quickly and effectively treat, some include:
Your Chicago CBT therapist will work with you collaboratively. Your initial sessions will be focused on getting to know you. Your CBT therapist will ask questions to understand your past physical and emotional health. Your therapist will listen for dysfunctional beliefs about yourself, others, and the world. You will identify problems together, which will direct the course of individual therapy.
Throughout the process, you will talk with the CBT therapist about your thoughts and feelings and what’s bothering you. Together you will identify distorted thoughts and perceptions and the ways that these thoughts impact how you act. You’ll then learn skills and implement those skills in the real world in order to challenge your ways of thinking and perceiving.
The length of CBT therapy largely depends on what’s bothering you, but CBT is generally considered a short-term treatment. Straightforward concerns may require only a couple months of CBT therapy, while more complex problems may take longer.
Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) is rooted in, and named after, the balancing of opposite positions (e.g., a dialectic). For example, balancing acceptance of what is with the need for change. Your DBT therapist will use strategies that focus on mindfulness, interpersonal skills, emotional regulation, and distress tolerance to create change. Like Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), DBT is a behavioral approach. This means that your DBT therapist in Chicago will assess situations and target specific reactions to those situations in order to help you achieve your goals. In this way, you’re more empowered to solve problems that arise in your life.
DBT therapists at Tandem Psychology see clients in the best possible light. Maybe you’ve felt judged by other therapists in Chicago? DBT therapists commit to following specific assumptions about clients to ensure that doesn’t happen.
Unlike other modes of treatment, DBT actually has four types of treatment delivery - individual therapy, skills groups, real-time coaching, and consultation among providers. Our DBT therapists may recommend various modes of treatment delivery or may integrate components of each mode into your individual therapy.
While DBT was originally developed to treat people with borderline personality disorder, it has since been shown effective in treating depression, bipolar disorder, anxiety, addiction, low self esteem, and relationship problems. If you’re ready to start DBT therapy, you can contact an individual therapist today.
ACT (Acceptance Commitment Therapy), an approach similar to Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), focuses on getting past the painful parts of life that you cannot control. This approach assumes that pain and suffering cannot be totally avoided and are inherently a part of life. Joy and happiness are built by accepting good and bad thoughts for what they are - just thoughts. Obsessing, playing situations over and over, and worrying make you feel helpless and keep you stuck. Your ACT therapist will help to accept reality and work with what you can control.
Engaging with an ACT therapist in Chicago may be a particularly good idea if you are someone who avoids your thoughts and feelings. Instead of stuffing them away, your ACT therapist will help you to accept the good and bad of life. You’ll move closer to difficult feelings with the goal of increasing your psychological flexibility, adhering to your values, and living more authentically.
ACT is a type of mindfulness-based therapy with a close relationship to CBT. Like CBT, ACT focuses on changing behaviors. In contrast to CBT therapy, in which the focus is on changing your faulty thoughts and assumptions, ACT therapists build acceptance of the good and bad, without fighting against them. ACT is considered a “third wave” psychotherapy because it moves beyond the focus on thoughts alone and integrates other focuses as well (such as mindfulness, visualization, personal values, etc.).
Your ACT therapist might use various techniques such as repeating thoughts over and over until the meaning vanishes and all that remains is the sound. Or, you may learn to find compassion for various aspects of your life, like grief, perfectionism, or chronic illness, instead of trying to fight against them. In ACT therapy, you will also explore what is important to you in your life, so that you can create more meaning and purpose in your life.
A very large body of research continues to demonstrate the effectiveness of ACT on the treatment of grief, depression, chronic illness, perfectionism, work addiction, overcoming infidelity, and complicated relationship history, among others.
While life does have ups and downs, engaging with our ACT therapists can help you be in control of how you react, think, and feel.
Schedule an appointment for ACT therapy in Chicago today!
If you live or work in Chicago and are looking for CBT therapy, please contact us today. Schedule an appointment at our Lakeview office or via telehealth to work with one of our highly talented CBT therapists.