Recovery-Oriented Cognitive Therapy (CT-R) is a treatment approach designed to promote empowerment, recovery, and resiliency in individuals with serious mental health conditions.

How Does CT-R Work?

Based on the cognitive model developed by Dr. Aaron T. Beck, this approach has been adapted from traditional CBT to promote the development of aspirations and participation in meaningful daily activities in individuals facing extensive physical and behavioral challenges.

The Adaptive Mode

The term “adaptive mode” captures the positive beliefs, emotions, and behaviors that appear when individuals are at their best. The first stage of CT-R treatment involves accessing an individual’s adaptive mode through shared activity, such as listening to music, watching videos, going for a walk, or discussing sports or travel. 


The second stage of treatment involves uncovering and developing an individual’s aspirations. Individuals are encouraged to vividly imagine their desired life. Developing and imagining meaningful aspirations instills hope and provides motivation for daily positive action. 

Positive Action

Positive action brings the underlying meaning of the individual’s aspirations into everyday life. For example, the individual who longs to be a nurse can engage in daily activities that involve helping others. During these activities, the person can strengthen beliefs about being capable of getting the life they want and being able to make a difference in the world. 

Empowerment and Resiliency

CT-R emphasizes empowerment relative to experiences provoked by stress, things not going as planned, rejections, and disappointments. During trying times, individuals are encouraged to maintain focus on their aspirations, connections, and their personal meanings. The cognitive model helps illuminate the individual’s negative beliefs that give rise to challenges, but also the positive beliefs that can help shift the focus back to adaptive modes of living. 

What is the Beck Institute Center for CT-R?

The Beck Institute Center for Recovery-Oriented Cognitive Therapy (CT-R) exists to empower individuals to flourish in the lives of their choosing. Our team promotes and implements the revolutionary practice of CT-R in multidisciplinary settings with individuals given a diagnosis of a serious mental health condition.

Are you a nurse, social worker, clinician, or other care provider, or do you work in a care setting and are seeking training in CT-R? Visit our training page to learn more.  

Our Impact 

Learn more about Beck Institute’s nonprofit mission to make excellent CBT and CT-R treatment accessible to all who could benefit.