CBT has a long history of helping clients break free from negative thoughts. But have you ever found that the more you challenge your client’s thoughts, the worse they get?
The evidence for using mindfulness is also exploding in the clinical research literature. Unfortunately, if used to help clients temporarily feel better, you might be reinforcing avoidance of their thoughts and feelings, making them worse in the long run!
I am often asked how CBT and mindfulness can work together. After all, CBT is all about change, and mindfulness emphasizes acceptance of reality in this moment. The answer is simple: we must accept reality as it is in order to effectively build a life worth living.
With Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT), you get the best of both CBT and mindfulness. MBCT is an empirically-validated intervention with decades of research support. The 8 sessions of the formal MBCT protocol is a “boot camp” for clients and clinicians to systematically learn and experience the subtle and sophisticated principles of mindfulness and CBT. The principles can also be easily incorporated into other therapy modalities to synergize the effectiveness of what you are already doing.
However, you cannot leverage the power of these techniques just by reading about them. To provide these interventions effectively for clients, it is imperative to experience it for yourself. Learn from psychologist and expert mindfulness trainer Dr. Richard Sears for a two-day experiential MBCT recorded workshop. You will experience every mindfulness exercise, CBT principle, and didactic component of the entire program, along with tips for adapting the material into a variety of individual therapy settings.
As an added bonus, programs like MBCT have also been shown to reduce stress and burnout for clinicians! And, when clinicians practice mindfulness for themselves, their clients have better outcomes!