Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy
Mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT) is a type of psychotherapy that involves a combination of cognitive therapy, meditation, and the cultivation of a present-oriented, non-judgmental attitude called "mindfulness."
A primary assumption of cognitive therapy is that thoughts precede moods and that false self-beliefs lead to negative emotions such as depression. The goal of cognitive therapy is to help you recognize and reassess your patterns of negative thoughts and replace them with positive thoughts that more closely reflect reality.
Mindfulness-based cognitive therapy builds upon the principles of cognitive therapy by using techniques such as mindfulness meditation to teach people to consciously pay attention to their thoughts and feelings without placing any judgments upon them.
This approach helps people review their thoughts without getting caught up in what could have been or might occur in the future. MBCT encourages clarity of thought and provides you the tools needed to more easily let go of negative thoughts instead of letting them feed your depression.
Much like with cognitive therapy, MBCT operates on the theory that if you have a history of depression and become distressed, you are likely to return to those automatic cognitive processes that triggered a depressive episode in the past.
The combination of mindfulness and cognitive therapy is what makes MBCT so effective. Mindfulness helps you observe and identify your feelings while cognitive therapy teaches you to interrupt automatic thought processes and work through feelings in a healthy way
Who it Helps
MBCT was shown to reduce the risk of relapse for people who experience recurrent depression by nearly 50%, regardless of their sex, age, education, or relationship status.
How it Works
Other MBCT techniques include the body scan exercise, yoga, walking and sitting meditations, sitting with thoughts, sitting with sounds, and mindfulness stretching.
What's in It for You
With proper instruction and guidance you can learn to take your thoughts captive as well as learn to identify and understand how you're feeling.