Simple Recovery's Blog

Friday, September 1, 2017

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Makes Addiction Treatment Simple

Cognitive behavioral therapy is the most relied upon form of therapy provided to men and women in treatment for addiction and co-occurring disorders. In addition to addiction and co-occurring disorders, cognitive behavioral therapy is being proven across a wide range of disciplines. Mental disorders, physical disorders, and chronic illnesses are all finding support and relief in cognitive behavioral therapy. Some have called it the “wonder” model because of its ability to effectively reduce the symptoms of so many different conditions. Cognitive behavioral therapy is accessible by seasoned psychological practitioners and even the intelligence of artificial programs. Today, cognitive behavioral therapy is being offered through teletherapy programs which include interactions with “bots” online. However, research has proven that cognitive behavioral therapy is most effective when it is done in person.


Traditional psychotherapy is not often goal-oriented. Classical approaches go through a discovery process as opposed to a solution-based process. Cognitive behavioral therapy approaches both the way we think and the way we behave. Our behaviors and actions are dependent upon what we think, particularly about what we think in a specific situation. In that situation, our thoughts are triggered by events in the past, which frame the way we are thinking about this situation in the present. Reliant upon those thoughts, we behave accordingly. For example, when we encounter stress that we feel is too far out of our reach for managing, as addicts and alcoholics in recovery, we might respond to the situation by reaching for drugs and alcohol. Somewhere in our lives we learned, by teaching ourselves, that our response to stress is through using drugs and alcohol. Cognitive behavioral therapy helps us understand that association. We think that the best way to respond is through substance abuse, so we behave with substance abuse. Underneath, however, there is more. The behavior of using substances isn’t entirely about using substances. Associated with substance abuse are themes of avoiding, running, numbing, escaping, self-destruction, and more. Those are patterns of thought as well as behavior shaped by something in the past. They frame our way of thinking and our way of behaving, which, as indicated by substance abuse, can be problematic.


Cognitive behavioral therapy works because it helps us to reframe the way we see a situation and empowers us to choose differently within that situation. We are able to focus more clearly and make choices differently when we are aware of where our thinking comes from, where our behaviors come from, and aware of the fact that we have an ability to choose. Cognitive behavioral therapy is liberating, providing us with the mechanics of freedom promised by sobriety.


Simple Recovery in Orange County, California, is offering clients and their families a simple approach to treatment and recovery from addiction and co-occurring disorders. Our three tiered approach is action-oriented, inspiring our clients to develop the life skills they need for living sober. Call us today for more information: 855-402-5617

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