At Headward we understand that you want to see quick results, however we also recognise that making life long changes to your behaviour and thinking process that takes time. We therefore tend to structure our therapy courses to first include a course of weekly sessions (typically 6-12) followed by follow-up sessions every couple of months after.
In this way you can quickly move on with your life but can still benefit from the occasional ‘check up’ and the support offered whilst trying to implement the new changes into their lives. During a course of therapy you are likely to receive a mixture of the therapy styles below as they work very well together.
Metacognitive processes are concerned with our ‘thinking about thinking’ and the way that we feel about, judge and evaluate our own mental processes. MCT is conducted in a similar way to CBT in that it is collaborative and time-limited. It is also placing heave emphasis on thoughts, emotions, behaviours and physiology however rather than being concerned about the nature of thoughts.
MCT is focusing on the way people think, more particularly unhelpful ways of thinking and relating to ones’ thoughts. Metacognitive Therapy is gaining scientific strength and is now being applied to a variety of conditions with good results. MCT also incorporates homework as a vital part of therapy. MCT would be particularly useful to try for those individuals who feel like CBT has not worked well for them.
Cognitive Behaviour Therapy
CBT is the main therapy offered within the NHS today and is recommended by NICE guidelines for a wide range of conditions. CBT is a structured, time-limited therapy where the therapist and client work collaboratively in order to achieve the desired changes. It places emphasis on thoughts, emotions, behaviour and physiology and how these interact. The therapist helps the client formulate the problem and give it context. Although earlier experiences and childhood issues will often be discussed and used to inform the understanding of the current problem, the sessions are more focused on the present and the future.
Together with the therapist, the client will learn to identify and modify unhelpful ways of thinking and behaving in order to achieve a more positive frame of mind and less negative emotions. Unhelpful patterns of thinking and behaving are highlighted and clients learn how to modify their thoughts, thereby experiencing less negative emotions and engaging in less maladaptive behaviours. Homework form an integral part of CBT and acts as the bridge between the sessions and the client’s outside world.
Acceptance and commitment Therapy
ACT is a form of mindfulness based CBT that aims to create rich and meaningful lives by identifying values and goals and encouraging clients to commit to action that will accomplish such personal goals. It uses a range of creative techniques and metaphor to overcome emotional obstacles and helps you reach your potential and enables you to live in accordance with your value system. You will learn to have a more relaxed relationship with difficult thoughts and feelings which enables greater psychological flexibility and frees you up to actually ACT differs from CBT in that instead of challenging distressing thoughts by looking for evidence and coming up with a more rational response (CBT), in ACT, the thought is accepted as a thought, e.g. "I'm having the thought that this boat is going to sink", and then defused using a variety of techniques, which may include mindfulness, metaphors and language. ACT uses three broad categories of techniques: mindfulness, including being present in the moment and defusion techniques; acceptance; and commitment to values-based living.