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Cognitive Behaviour Therapy and Your Body

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I always talk about the body with clients.

With Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT) you will often see a triangle used to describe the CBT model. The points of the triangle are your Thoughts, your Feelings and your Behaviours. CBT therapy helps you look at how those interact.

The CBT triangle is a great model – however, I add the Body smack in the middle of the triangle. I do this because your Thoughts, Feelings and Behaviours also affect your Body and vice versa.

I encourage clients to tune in to how their stress or emotions feel in their body. It takes a little practice or “homework”. They track symptoms and become more aware of what is going on. Often, they can notice an interaction between their thoughts, feelings or behaviours and their body. For example – lack of sleep can lead to irritability. Or, worried thoughts can lead to lack of sleep. Or, anxiety can lead to loss of appetite.

Once clients are more aware of what is going on in their body – they can then learn to use a tool or technique when those body sensations start. With anxiety, worry, or panic, it can essentially head off the problem when it begins.

Or, clients learn techniques to calm their body, which can then calm their thoughts.

Everyone is unique and everyone needs a personal, tailored approach to help them manage or change the problems they come to therapy to work on. It is my honour to be a part of that experience with them.