Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Montie Hopper
University of Texas Arlington
This paper will discuss Laura’s signs of anxiety when speaking in public and attending get-togethers or conferences and will also assist her in understanding her illogical opinions associated with others. It will explain the best sequence of treatment related with her anxiety and why it would help her.
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Laura is a 47-year-old female who has given information about signs of anxiety when speaking publicly, in a group of people, especially in front of authority figures. She believes she will seem dull or meaningless in front of her peers and even disregard her. She has opted out of attending many congregations because of the anxiety she has voiced to be having.
Cognitive Behavior Theory is the best model for Laura’s social anxiety issues she has been experiencing while in public situations. Tanaka et al. (2015) conducted a study with an adult male that originally had a negative self-image of himself, that effected his social interactions, before starting Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. After completing multiple sessions, he began to understand that he was not being viewed the way he had originally believed which in turn lowered his social anxiety levels. This would be helpful for Laura because she too could have the same positive results after treatment/therapy.
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy has been used for many decades and can assist individuals, in a group setting or one on one, in correcting the issues with unreasonable beliefs that unpleasantly affect his/her live. Adults are often shaped by the experiences or memories of his/her past and use those experiences in his/her behaviors. Difficult memories from childhood can absolutely have the same consequences that Laura is currently having. Cognitive Behavioral Theory explains that a child may develop a fear by something that an adult may view as very minor but to that child it becomes a large issue. During childhood, things mean more to the individual than when he/she becomes an adult. An example, a child can grow an attachment to a specific object if it is something he/she has been in contact with his/her entire life. A specific toy he/she has had as far back as he/she can remember might become a source of comfort if the parent has assisted in associated it with meaningful times in the child’s life. Some information that has been reported by Laura, is that she was grew up in an unhealthy home by her mother and her father, both of which, were involved with some sort of abuse. She is the only female child and has two male siblings. She frequently viewed and suffered trauma from her father and mother, such as verbal abuse towards her from her parents as well as watching verbal altercations between her father and mother. Due to her enduring this verbal abuse, she would try to try extra hard to prove to her parents, especially her mother, she was not the terrible child she repeatedly said she was. She also often remembers her father being an unsympathetic and not showing any emotion to her mother as well as the children in the house. She even described circumstances where physical abuse was involved. Bruce et al. (2013) have begun studies that show the connection between child maltreatment and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for social anxiety. Studies in the past have not focused on this connection but rather the medication side of therapy. Individuals with a childhood past of emotional maltreatment did report higher levels of social anxiety. She has reported that she regularly experiences anxiety when socializing with others in many different types of social events. She has problems with speaking to authority figures. She expressed a fear that others will become disappointed with her or even reject her. Laura has skipped many events or work conferences because of these beliefs. She has identified that her fear is extreme and because she is required to speak to many individuals in the law firm where she works, she believes this issue is having a negative effect with her at work. Butler et al. (2018) explains that emotional clarity is one of the main parts of regulating emotions. Laura has started the steps in shaping how she can manage her emotions and her anxiety by changing the way she currently views herself and others. She is emotionally aware of her behavior and issues with social interactions and because of this she has a higher level of emotional clearness which can lead to optimistic coping and an overall greater happiness. Understanding this information allows the therapist to use Cognitive Behavioral Therapy to assist in addressing Laura’s current beliefs and how those have affected Laura’s social life. This therapy can also support her in understanding how Laura’s social interactions growing up have affected her current social issues.
After an interview with Laura and listening to her current anxiety issues and family history, a description of Cognitive Behavioral Theory is described to Laura. This will help give her an understanding of this concept in detail, and with the information she has given about her childhood how it can relate to her behavior, beliefs, and anxiety. The therapist will engage with Laura using a blend of beneficial communication strategies such as a peaceful tone of voice, facial expressions, and a caring sociable attitude to ensure Laura feels a sense of acceptance from him/her. Gregory et al. (2018) has said that social anxiety is an illness that, if let untreated, will become a long-lasting disorder affecting more areas of an individual’s life. Unhealthy beliefs about the individual’s self along with others are common because the person has an extremely high standard of beliefs about themselves and is certain that others instantly have a negative view about him/her. This engagement between the therapist and Laura, will assist her in expressing her current views from the standpoint of learning. With treatment, she will begin to gain a positive view that the behavior she has been displaying can be unlearned. It is helpful for the individual to understand that the negative behavior she is wanting to eliminate, or lessening is a learned action that can be unlearned with treatment. She will also begin to build confidence in herself, which she has lacked in the past, by understanding that her social anxiety does not define her and can be changed to bring positive satisfaction.
Helpful Model Aspects
Lastly, this method can be extremely helpful to Laura and the social anxiety she is experiencing. In order for this method to be effective she must be fulling engaged, and willing, in learning and changing the current beliefs and actions. Laura has revealed her current beliefs, which appear to be associated with acquaintances and how they view her, she seems to have an understanding that these beliefs are irrational, unnecessary, and affecting her career. She will be given an intervention strategy that will show her what she can do to control or decrease her anxiety. These strategies will be learned, practiced, and can be used in situations where she begins to feel her social anxiety level rising to an area that is uncontrollable. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy will help her learn how to manage and relieve her anxiety because learning is one of the most important areas of treatment. Anxiety might not be something that Cognitive Behavioral Therapy will eliminate but with effective treatment, coping strategies can assist in lowering the anxiety levels to a more practicable level which will allow Laura to attend more social gatherings and feel more comfortable in meetings at work. Willutzki et al. (2012) completed a study that was focused on the long lasting effects of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for the treatment of social anxiety and found that there was a noted lower percentage of social anxiety, after a 2 or 10 years period, in individuals that have completed Cognitive Behavioral Therapy compared to those who did not.
Bruce, L. C., Heimberg, R. G., Goldin, P. R., & Gross, J. J. (2013). CHILDHOOD MALTREATMENT AND RESPONSE TO COGNITIVE BEHAVIORAL THERAPY AMONG INDIVIDUALS WITH SOCIAL ANXIETY DISORDER. Depression & Anxiety (1091-4269), 30(7), 662-669. doi:10.1002/da.22112
Butler, R. M., Boden, M. T., Olino, T. M., Morrison, A. S., Goldin, P. R., Gross, J. J., & Heimberg, R. G. (2018). Emotional clarity and attention to emotions in cognitive behavioral group therapy and mindfulness-based stress reduction for social anxiety disorder. Journal Of Anxiety Disorders, 5531-38. doi:10.1016/j.janxdis.2018.03.003
Gregory, B., Wong, Q. J., Marker, C. D., & Peters, L. (2018). Maladaptive Self-Beliefs During Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for Social Anxiety Disorder: A Test of Temporal Precedence. Cognitive Therapy & Research, 42(3), 261-272. doi:10.1007/s10608-017-9882-5
Tanaka, Y., Kobori, O., & Nakazato, M. (2015). Changes in picturing of ‘self’ in social anxiety disorder: a case report. Cognitive Behaviour Therapist, 81-17. doi:10.1017/S1754470X15000033
Willutzki, U., Teismann, T., & Schulte, D. (2012). Psychotherapy for Social Anxiety Disorder: Long-Term Effectiveness of Resource-Oriented Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy and Cognitive Therapy in Social Anxiety Disorder. Journal Of Clinical Psychology, 68(6), 581-591. doi:10.1002/jclp.21842