Cognitive Behavioral Therapy And Depression Free Sample

            Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is founded on the principle that an individual’s way of thinking affects their behavior, indicating that cognition is directly related to behavior. This therapy involves the guiding of an individual to learn to handle the different ways by which they distort reality with their cognitive processes, to learn to cope with their own cognitive distortions: overgeneralization, catastrophising, black and white thinking, labeling, mind reading, fortune telling, and the like. (Sullivan et al, 2003) Thus an individual is guided to recognized occurrence of negative automatic thoughts and to learn to modify these thoughts into more positive and more constructive ones. Thus Cognitive Behavioral Therapy aims to reframe an individual’s cognition in the hopes of reforming problem areas identified in his or her behavior.

            Cognitive Behavior Therapy has been utilized for many different psychological disorders and problems. Researchers have been so intrigued by the potential of cognition as a key to an individual’s behavior that many different techniques have been paired with Cognitive Behavioral Therapy in efforts to find potent complementary techniques that will aid in the therapy’s aim of helping an individual renew their cognition mechanisms. This would provide those on the field, with more tools with which they could address their clients’ complaints. One such example is the successful results yielded by the study on the augmentation of metaphor, Gestalt principles and guided imager with the original processes of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. (Abbatiello, 2006)

Although Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is often used on many different psychological problems such as addictions, pain disorders, eating disorders, anger issues, anxiety disorders, sexual dysfunction and family problems, the therapy’s most popular an d most widely acknowledged application is on depression. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy has been found to be a strong and effective technique that can be used to aid an individual experiencing depression. Its strength has been found in the cognitive aspects that serve as the foundations of depression. It has also been found in the results of studies utilizing the therapy in different ways on a population of individuals with depression.

Mechanism of Cognition on Depression

            The cognitive theory on depression is heavily founded on an information-processing model. Depression induces an individual to think negatively about certain processes through a prolonged and emphasized manner. The way by which depressive individuals cognitively process information, in the taking in of information as well as in its assessment, is varied to a certain degree from that of non-depressive individuals that it causes dysfunctional behavior. The differed way of cognitization in depressed individuals leads to extreme misery and can even lead to harmful behavior such as suicide or self-injury. (Beck, 2002; 1989 Davison & Neale, 2001)

            According to Beck (2002), a depressed individual has negative schemas that cause biases in their way of thinking which in turn fuels the negative schema. Thus depression is a vicious cycle fueled by distorted cognitive processes. This is what Beck calls the cognitive triad.

Another theory on depression states the factor of hopelessness in the condition. Hopelessness is felt mainly due to the mechanism of cognitive distortion, fortune telling, wherein the individual believes nothing good will come out of a given situation therefore foretelling possible outcomes and sinking into feelings of helplessness and misery. (Davison & Neale, 2001; Sullivan et al, 2003; Abramson et al, 1989) These feelings of hopelessness lead to feelings of being trapped and of being defeated. Thus depressive cognitive patterns increase automatic negative thoughts in depressive individuals. They begin to turn to negative thoughts as a means of self-preservation and self-defense. (Odaci, 2007)

Application of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy on Depression

            Cognitive Behavior Therapy was initially developed specifically for depression. The treatment focused on applying specific and evidence-based techniques aimed at depressogenic information processing. (Beck, 1979) Congitive Behavioral Therapy thus involves the correction of negative automatic thoughts underlying depression. Clients are taught to have a more positivistic way of thinking, a more adaptive cognition of different situations and circumstances. Cogntive Behavioral Therapy, however, is not limited only to correcting the cognitive aspect of a depressive individual. It also reaches out to the physiological and behavioral aspect, through activities monitoring, meditation practices, and the like, thus creating a holistic approach to the treatment of depression. (McGinn, 2000)

            Cognitive Behavioral Therapy can be applied to many different forms of depression. It can be used to decrease symptoms of bipolar depression. Despite the difference between bipolar depressive individuals and unipolar depressive individuals, treatment procedure was the same. The mechanism of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for the two types of depressions is also the same. This means that even in bipolar depressive individuals, Cognitive Behavior Therapy only acts on the information processing aspect of the said individual. The treatment, however, only addresses the issues of depression in these individuals and is unable to address the deeper problems of bipolar disorder. (Zaretsky et al, 1999)

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy can also be used to decrease childhood and adolescent depression through the same mechanisms that it treats adult depression, which is through the close monitoring of the deprossogenic information processing of these children and through replacement of this process with more adaptive ways of thinking. These are also coupled with the performance of behaviors that will increase positive reinforcement of adaptive thinking instead of distorted thinking which are characteristic features of depression. (Henline, 1999) Cognitive Behavioral Therapy proves to be one of the most potent treatments of childhood depression. This is due to its flexibility in addressing the specific context of the child’s depression. (Asarnow et al, 2002) Children might stand to benefit the most from this therapy because their schemas of the world are established during this time period. Using Cognitive Behavioral Therapy to change their schema and self-image this early in time will allow for them to have more adaptive life experiences and thus well-adjusted lives in the future. Having the child practice coping mechanisms and relaxation techniques will have influences on his or her life stretching on to adulthood. The fact that Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is one of two known treatments is important. Most adult forms of depression have roots in childhood especially with the fact that depression is a result mostly of the interaction psychological factors and stressful life events that were established from early years in an individual’s life. (Watt & Markham, 2005) Thus Cognitive Behavioral Therapy may provide early intervention for depression thus preventing adult depression symptoms.

The strength of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy lies in the fact that it can be used alongside many different treatments for depression thus creating a multiplied factor on the speed and assurance of recovery. (Teasdale et al, 2000) Some studies found that application of some medication and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy applied individually on chronic depression resulted in equal statistical decrease. However, when these methods were applied together, it resulted in a statistically significant decrease in depression in the sample. (Keller et al, 2000)

Spencer & Nashelsky (2005) maintained, however, that the application of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy together with other treatments for depression is dependent on many other factors. One of these includes the individual preference of the client with depression. It is important to take the treatment of the client individually. Along with this, it is also important to consider the physician or psychologist’s preference. Coupling Cognitive Behavioral Therapy with other treatments will only provide effective results if the physician is highly experienced in the use of the treatments involved.

Efficacy of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy on Depression

            The efficacy of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy as an answer to the needs of a depressed individual is clear from the results of past research A study done by Teasdale et al (2000) shows that mindfulness-based cognitive therapy, which was aimed to aid depressive individuals in the process of recovering but who continue to experience relapse, provides statistically significant decrease in relapse of depressive individuals. Also, it showed not only a statistical significance but also showed that results of the therapy were independent from that of medication, that therapy was just as potent as medication for depression.

Another study showed that Cognitive Behavioral Therapy was an effective treatment for depression in children. This was especially true when the therapy was conducted together with family education intervention. This was an important finding due to the rarity of treatments and psychotherapy techniques that were effective in reducing and completely treating depression in children. (Henline, 1999; Asarnow et al, 2002) This allows children with depressive symptoms to be treated of their depression without having to undergo medication which could affect them adversely at so young an age. The efficacy of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy in treating childhood depression is also attributable to the fact that children are much more easily trained and taught to think and behave a certain way as opposed to adults who have already established their own cognitive processes about the world. Children are more prone to adapt the processes of Cogntive Behavioral Therapy as opposed to older depressive individuals. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, compared to medication, addresses more of the factors of childhood depression. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy addresses the psychological roots as well as the stressful life events which add to the etiology of childhood depression whereas pharmacology addresses only biological factors. (Watt & Markham, 2005)

Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy, one of the first forms of Cognitive Behavior Therapy is evidence to its efficacy as treatment for depression. REBT teaches the individual to take irrational beliefs, dispute them and to change them with more rational thoughts and belief systems.  It not only effectively addresses irrational depressive thinking but also addresses co-morbid conditions such as anxiety, anger and panic. (Ellis & Dryden, 2007)


            Cognitive Behavioral Therapy focuses on giving an individual a more adaptive way of processing the information entering their cognitive system. Individuals with depression experience many distortions in their cognitive thought. These distortions are lessened and even stopped completely with continued application of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. Hopelessness and defeated feelings of depressed individuals are effectively addressed by exposing them to behavior which will allow them to edify their newly gained adaptive cognitive processes.

In conclusion, it can be said that Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is indeed one of the most effective treatments for depression available today. The cognitive features of depression, its actions on an individual’s information processing, and its effect on an individual’s schema allows for it to be easily targeted by Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. The strength of the therapy is in the fact that it can be combined with other treatments to provide stronger and speedier results. Research continues to explore the ways by which Cognitive Behavioral Therapy can be utilized and investigates different techniques that can be used to complement its mechanism.


Abbatiello, G. (2006). Cognitive-behavioral therapy and metaphor. Perspectives in Psychiatric Care, 42(3), 208-210

Abramson, L., Metalsky, G., & Alloy, L. (1989). Hopeless depression: a theory based subtype of depression. Psychological Review, 96, 358-372

Asarnow, J., Scott, C., Mintz, J. (2002) A combined cognitive-behavioral family education intervention for depression in children: a treatment development study. Cognitive Therapy and Research, 26, 221-229

Beck, A., Rush, A., Shaw, B., & Emery, G. (1979). Cognitive therapy of depression. New York: Guilford

Beck, A. (2002). Cognitive models of depression. In Robert Leahy & E Thomas Dowd (Eds). Clinical Advances in Cognitive Psychotherapy Theory and Application (29-61). New York: Springer Publishing Company

Davison, G., & Neale, J. (2001). Abnormal psychology. (8th ed.). NJ:John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

Ellis, A., & Dryden, W. (2007). The Practice of Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy. (2nd ed.) New York: Springer Publishing Company

Henline, L. (1999). Childhood and adolescence depression. Child & Adolescent Psychopathology Retrieved 26 January 2008 from

Keller, M., McCullough, J., Klein, D., Arnow, B., Dunner, D., Gelenberg, A., Markowitz, J., Nemeroff, C., Russell, J., Thase, M., Triyedi, M., & Zajecka, J. (2000). A comparison of nefazodone, the cognitive behavioral-analysis system of psychogherapy, and their combination for the treatmen of chronic depression. New England Jounral of Medicine, 342, 1462-1470

McGinn, L. (2000) Cognitive behavioral therapy of depression: theory, treatment, and empirical status. American Journal of Psychotherapy, 54(2), 257-262

Odaci, H. (2007). Depression, submissive behaviors, and negative automatic thoughts in obese Turkish adolescents. Social Behavior and Personality, 35(3), 409-416

Queensland Health. (2003). Cognitive behavioral therapy. Brisbane, Australia: Sullivan, J., Ryan, R., MacDonald, K

Spencer, D., Nashelsky, J. (2005). Counseling or antidepressants for treating depression? American Family Physician, 72(11)

Watts, S. J., & Markham, R. A. (2005). Etiology of depression in children. Journal of Instructional Psychology, 32(3), 266-670

Zaretsky, A., Segal, Z., & Gemar, M. (1999). Cognitive therapy for bipolar depression: a pilot study. Canadian Journal of Psychiatry, 44(5), 491-494

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy


Cognitive behavioral therapy is commonly employed in treatment of psychiatric problems especially during the counseling sessions. This model lays emphasis on the power of the thoughts in influencing behavior and thus efforts to correct the dysfunctional behavior are normally focused on changing the thought process of the clients.


Cognitive behavioral therapy better known as CBT is a psychotherapeutic model that is used in solving the problems associated with emotional dysfunctions in individuals through the established systematic procedures. CBT is a generalized terminology that includes various therapies which are similar in their implementation. CBT is usually based on the conceptualization that our feelings and behaviors emanates from the thoughts and not externally generated. This means that external influence on behavior such as people; situations; and events do not influence our behaviors and feelings. This paper shall elaborate my personal philosophy in regard to the cognitive behavioral therapy.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy:

The key element of the CBT is that thoughts are central to the mediation between the stimuli and emotions, thus stimuli are responsible for eliciting a thought which in turn produces an emotion. Therefore the stimulus is not directly responsible for the emotional response but rather the evaluation/thought regarding that stimulus is the factor that is responsible for the emotion that is expressed. In cognitive behavioral therapy therefore, it is assumed that individuals are capable of being aware of their very own thoughts and are able to alter them. It is also assumed that the thoughts that are produced by the stimulus may at times fail to reflect the reality with accuracy thus leading to distortion (Mulhauser, 2010).

In conceptualizing human nature, it is important to have a positive approach towards the various emotional challenges that we encounter in the day to day life. This implies that our cognition, behaviors and emotions should positively be guided so as to be able to overcome the anxiety disorders that may arise. We need to learn new ways which can help us alter the old thinking patterns and habits. This is because the way we think always has an impact on the lives we lead for instance if we are always involved in negative thinking then we are bound to live in great suffering. Human minds can be conditioned to respond in various manners and thus they can be trained to either adopt the negative or healthy feeling. Thus CBT becomes crucial as it emphasizes on the premise of this argument (Richards, Ph.D. 2010).

Techniques in CBT:

For efficiency in employing the CBT, there is need for the therapy to be brief and have a time limitation. Unlike other forms of therapies including psychoanalysis which usually takes longer, CBT is time bound and usually highly instructive and employs the use of homework assignments. The therapist has to discuss with the client on the time when the process shall end. There is also need to establish a positive relationship with the client so as to enhance the therapeutic process. A good and trusting relation between the therapist and the client is crucial as it leads to collaborative effort between the two (Corey, G., Corey, M. S., & Callanan, 2007).

This is important as it enables the therapist identify the goals of the client and thus being in a position to assist him/her in achieving them. The therapist role is restricted to listening, teaching and encouraging whereas that of the client involves expressing concerns, learning and implementation of the learning. The therapist has to develop the CBT in a structured and directive manner tailor made to suit the specific demands of the client. Emphasis should be laid on the educational system since learning is the main concern here and that the therapist is to help the clients unlearn the unpleasant reactions while embracing the necessary way of reacting (National Association of Cognitive-Behavioral Therapists, 2009).

In counseling, assessment, diagnosis, and testing are common practices before a client is put on a counseling session. Since counseling is a form of treatment to the expressed behavioral and emotional problems, it becomes necessary for the treatment to be well guided by the facts about the patient. To unravel the facts on the clients, it is therefore important for the therapist or counselor to engage in assessment, diagnosis and testing procedures. These are crucial elements in the provision of therapy programs as they enable the counselor/therapist to get to the root of the problem and thus prescribe the best approach in alleviating the problem (Corey, G., Corey, M. S., & Callanan, 2007).

Cognitive therapy was first developed in early 1960s with the aim of providing solutions to problems that were related to dysfunctional thinking and behavior. In the recent past, cognitive therapy has been diversified to apply on various psychiatric disorders. Though there has been a variation in the approaches, the main stand point of the cognitive approaches has been that distorted or rather dysfunctional thinking is the root cause for the psychological problems (Beck, 1995). Cognitive behavioral therapy is therefore an important aspect of psychotherapy as applied in the modern world. According to the Royal College of Psychiatrists;

CBT has been shown to help with many different types of problems. These include: anxiety, depression, panic, phobias (including agoraphobia and social phobia), stress, bulimia, obsessive compulsive disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, bipolar disorder and psychosis. CBT may also help if you have difficulties with anger, a low opinion of yourself or physical health problems, like pain or fatigue (Royal College of Psychiatrists, 2010, para 3).


Cognitive behavioral therapy can be regarded as one of the most comprehensive theoretical approaches to counseling. Since it acknowledges the importance of the thought process in the behavior as exhibited by humans, it is important to analyze behavior from a cognitive angle so as to be in a position to understand and explain the psychiatric disorders emanating from distorted or rather dysfunctional thinking.


Beck, J. S. (1995). Cognitive therapy basics and beyond. New York [u.a.] Guilford Press.

Corey, G., Corey, M. S., & Callanan, P. (2007). Issues and ethics in the helping professions. Belmont, CA: Brooks/Cole

Mulhauser, G., (2010). An Introduction to Cognitive Therapy & Cognitive Behavioral Approaches. Retrieved on 8th July 2010 from;

National Association of Cognitive-Behavioral Therapists, (2009). Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy. Retrieved on 8th July 2010 from;

Richards, T. A., Ph.D. (2010). Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT). Retrieved on 8th July 2010 from;

Royal College of Psychiatrists, (2010). Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT). Retrieved on 8th July 2010 from;

Cognitive Behavior [Therapy] As Used In Female Juvenile Offenders

     Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT) has long been used by correctional programs to assist people [particularly those who were accused and were proven guilty of several cases of behavioral disturbances] in gaining back their attitude towards the righteous path of living. It is through this therapy that they are able to gain back the characteristics that they once possessed in particularly being a person that is more enhanced in doing what is right. The personal acceptance of what is right and what is not is further posted through the use of this particular therapy, hence allowing the individuals to realize the way that they are supposed to take to be able to recover from their situation. Moreover, the therapy as per mentioned aims to help the target audience of the process to realize their capabilities of changing as individuals towards the betterment of their abilities and their attitudes towards life.

     Chronic and female juvenile offenders are most likely noted to have been affected by the different stresses brought about to them by the different dealings that they particularly needed to face in life. It is then obvious how cognitive behavior therapy could actually assist in the restoration of the attitude of the said individuals towards becoming rooted in the right path again Behavioral disturbance could be treated as noted through the therapy through a psychologically focused procedure that enhances the capabilities of the person to see himself through the society. The Dialectical Behavior Therapy Program for Incarcerated Female Juvenile Offenders further makes use of the DBT program to be able to implement its  activities for further progress of the program. Why is the CBT applied in this situation? The following are only some of the reasons:

·          It is the most evidence-based form of psychotherapy.

·          It is active, problem focused, and goal directed. In contrast to many “talk therapies,” CBT emphasizes the present, concentrating on what the problem is and what steps are needed to alleviate it.

·          It is easy to measure. Since the effects of the therapy are concrete (i.e., changing behaviors) the outcomes tend to be quite measurable.

·          It provides quick results. If the person is motivated to change, relief can occur rapidly.

(Source: OJJDP Programs. (2007). Cognitive Behavioral Treatment.

     The participants of the said program actually ranges between the ages of nine towards 16 who are duly considered as juvenile delinquents. They are subjected to do undergo the program so as to be able to regain themselves for the sake of their future as teens. IT is almost the same as the recidivism program as per proposed by the State administrations as a process of treating the juvenile delinquents of the state. Through the said program, the juvenile delinquents are given a chance to realize what they have done and what they could still do about their lives. Realizing the possibilities that the future could still hold for them is a particular key towards progress that the said individuals need to be able to recover from their own transgressions as sourced out from their own dealings as individuals. True, they may have done something that is difficult enough to clean up in their own views, however, through the use of Cognitive Behavior Therapy, they are encouraged to understand that although it was their own fault why they are where they are at present, it is undeniable that they could still change the way things turned out to be.

     Moreover, the program also monitors those who are most likely possible of becoming delinquents through the observation of their acts in school and with their friends in certain places. In this particular process, the individuals possible for committing delinquencies in the society are being regulated in terms of their behavioral personalities. The said process also includes other procedures of psychological assessments of the situation of the said young ones. The said psychological procedures include Functional Family Therapy, Multisystemic Therapy, and the Michigan State Diversion Project. Multiple context approaches such as these that encourage CBT implementation in the home and in the school have demonstrated their effectiveness at positively changing the life course of some of these young people (Brosnan and Carr, 2000: Sourced from:

     True, the said process aims to understand that young people [even young women] are able to take several steps in giving way to their wants whether they are right or wrong. This is the reason why it is strongly implied within the programs towards the enhancement of the development of the youth that cognitive behavior therapy be applied in treating their dilemmas that particularly stresses them in bringing transgressions unto themselves through delinquent acts.

     The application of cognitive behavior therapy assists in the process of making it easier for young ones to survive the challenges that life further offers them. Moreover, it aims to help them see the difference of being able to simply decide based on what they want and being able to decide on what they are certainly supposed to do.


OJJDP Programs. (2007). Cognitive Behavioral Treatment. (September 25, 2007).


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