Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy

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I started with a new therapist last week. This is his method of therapy. I included a link and made a static page for it for reference to help anyone else that comes along. I know this new therapy is going to help me. I have a very rational and scientific mind. My only issue is forcing myself to believe what I know to be true.

http://psychcentral.com/lib/rational-emotive-behavior-therapy/0001563

The main tenet of the theory is that, for the most part, people upset themselves rather than others or events having the power to cause emotional disturbance, neurosis or psychosis in them. And that system; their philosophy of life, their attitude, their outlook.

This belief system is identifiable since its usually expressed in simple exclamatory statements via signals or thoughts.

Even thought the individual may have learned the particular beliefs along time ago from early childhood to beginning adult life, the disturbance today is the direct result of their stil believing certain irrational beliefs and continuing to practice and maintain them today whether consciously, unconsciously, repetition, self reinforcement, or self-propagandizing.

The theory further holds that once these beliefs are recognized, nothing short of hard work  at challenging them and replacing them with rational beliefs will result in significant changes.

Getting Better vs Feeling Better

In simplistic terms, REBT explains emotional disturbances as follows:

  • Activating event: Something occurs that the individual perceives or becomes aware of.
  • Believe system: The person evaluates what has happened according to their learned and practiced value system.
  • Consequence: After evaluating the situation the person responds with feelings and actions. this consequence will determined by their evaluation of belief.
  • Disputing: The person will benefit by actively challenging and forcing the disputing their beliefs that lead to unwanted feelings and behaviors.

Example:

  1. Partner breaks up with you

Rational Beliefs

Irrational Beliefs

  • I don’t like it.

  • This is awful and unsustainable

  • Its not fair.

  • I cant go on without them

  • I really cared for them.

  • I will never be happy again.

  • I would not do that to them.

  • They should not have done that to me.

  • My life will not be the same.

  • I am a total loser

 

Rational Consequences

Irrational Consequences

  • Feelings of disappointment, annoyance, and concern.

  • Depression, Anger, Anxiety

  • Determination to move on to a better life with or without a partner.

  • Avoidance of activities and responsibilities.

  • Inability to concentrate.

  • Thoughts of suicide, attempts, or years of depression and anger

In this example, the individual has made irrational, demanding, damning conclusions that not only rely on untrue beliefs, but also lead to extreme and non-productive feelings.

Rather than learning from a bad situation, the individual will most likely create undue stress and continue to practice avoidance. If continued this will most likely lead to further pain rather than recovery and growth.

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