What is CBT?

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT)

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) is an evidenced-based form of talk therapy that has proven to be highly effective for treating a wide variety of psychological concerns. Research has shown that how we feel is driven by our cognitions about ourselves, the world, and other people. Unfortunately, cognitive distortions, or irrational thinking can lead to unwanted emotions (e.g. anxiety and depression), and unhelpful behaviours (e.g. avoidance).


CBT will teach you how to identify and understand the thoughts and behaviours that are affecting your life, and most importantly how to create lasting change. Therapy is straightforward, rational, and provides tools you can apply in your daily life. This direct approach, coupled with a collaborative relationship, and practical cognitive/behavioural techniques, makes CBT a highly effective treatment that can result in a profound improvement in your ability to be happy, fulfilled, and THRIVE!


The ‘Cognitive’ part of CBT teaches clients how to identify their own cognitive distortions, and what factors may be perpetuating irrational thought patterns. Clients are then taught how to differentiate between rational and irrational thoughts and how they can challenge their cognitive distortions in order to develop new ways of helpful thinking.


The ‘Behaviour’ part of CBT teaches clients how to change their behaviours in order to further reinforce the new helpful patterns of thoughts. For example, a client who is working to reduce their social anxiety may choose to go with a friend to a social gathering in order to challenge their ideas about meeting new people. These behavioural tasks (homework assignments), are done between therapy sessions, and serve to help clients continue to disprove their irrational beliefs.


CBT, is a therapy that is driven by the collaboration between therapist and client. The therapist has an expertise in psychological disorders (e.g. how they originate, are maintained and increase). While the client is an expert in themselves. Thus, clients play an active role in the therapeutic process by providing examples and ideas to discuss in therapy sessions and collaborating in developing homework assignments.


CBT has been used effectively since the 1950’s for treating a wide variety of psychological concerns. In depth reviews of empirical studies have found that CBT consistently has a positive effect for treating depression, anxiety, addictions, bipolar disorder, eating disorders, personality disorders and more general concerns such as stress, and interpersonal issues.