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Excerpted from Feeling Good: The New Mood Therapy by David Burns. Copyright © 1999 by David Burns. Excerpted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc.  All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher. HTML and web pages copyright © by SpiritSite.com.
 

"Cognitive therapy is one of the first forms of psychotherapy which has been shown to be effective through rigorous scientific research under the critical scrutiny of the academic community."

  David Burns, Feeling Good, Part 2

Cognitive therapy is a fast-acting technology of mood modification that you can learn to apply on your own. It can help you eliminate the symptoms and experience personal growth so you can minimize future upsets and cope with depression more effectively in the future.

The simple, effective mood-control techniques of cognitive therapy provide:

  1. Rapid Symptomatic Improvement: In milder depressions, relief from your symptoms can often be observed in as short a time as twelve weeks.
  2. Understanding: A clear explanation of why you get moody and what you can do to change your moods. You will learn what causes your powerful feelings; how to distinguish "normal" from "abnormal" emotions; and how to diagnose and assess the severity of your upsets.
  3. Self-control: You will learn how to apply safe and effective coping strategies that will make you feel better whenever you are upset. I will guide you as you develop a practical, realistic, step-by-step self-help plan. As you apply it, your moods can come under greater voluntary control.
  4. Prevention and Personal Growth: Genuine and long-lasting prophylaxis (prevention) of future mood swings can effectively be based on a reassessment of some basic values and attitudes which lie at the core of your tendency toward painful depressions. I will show you how to challenge and reevaluate certain assumptions about the basis for human worth.

The problem-solving and coping techniques you learn will encompass every crisis in modem life, from minor irritations to major emotional collapse. These will include realistic problems, such as divorce, death, or failure, as well as those vague, chronic problems that seem to have no obvious external cause, such as low self-confidence, frustration, guilt, or apathy.

The question may now occur to you, "Is this just another self-help pop psychology?" Actually, cognitive therapy is one of the first forms of psychotherapy which has been shown to be effective through rigorous scientific research under the critical scrutiny of the academic community.

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