Considering Therapy?

If you are undecided about therapy, think about the following:
– You don’t need to make a commitment to a minimum number of sessions:
Some patients find even a few therapy sessions useful and then choose to continue working on their own.
– View therapy as an experiment:
There is no way of your knowing in advance that cognitive therapy will definitely help, but it has helped countless people with difficulties. Think of giving cognitive therapy a try; there’s probably no hard evidence that it won’t help.
– Realize that there is no big risk:
If it’s not helpful enough, you can stop, but the potential benefit might be great. It would be a shame if you decided not to try something that could really make a difference in your life.
– It’s normal to have concerns:
You may worry whether therapy can help or you may feel hopeless about it. If you’re predicting that nothing will make you feel better, you may be wrong.
– Finances are often a problem:
Many insurance plans pay for part of the cost of evaluation and treatment. Our goal is to teach you to be your own therapist and to keep therapy short, so cognitive therapy may be the best investment you could make.
– If you’d like to know more, please call our Clinic Coordinator, Tia Jones, at 610-664-3020. There are also many excellent self-help books that can give you a good idea of what cognitive therapy is all about. See our recommended reading list to learn more.
Cognitive behavior therapists, being both practical and collaborative, can discuss the advantages and disadvantages of medication with you. Many patients are treated without medication at all. Some disorders, however, respond better to a combination of medication and cognitive therapy. If you are on medication, or would like to be on medication, you might want to discuss with your therapist whether you should have a psychiatric consultation with a specialist (a psychopharmacologist) to ensure that you are on the right kind and dosage of medication. If you are not on medication and do not want to be on medication, you and your therapist might assess, after four to six weeks, how much you’ve progressed and determine whether you might want a psychiatric consultation at that time to obtain more information about medication.
One way is to ask your therapist how you might be able to supplement your psychotherapy with cognitive therapy readings, workbooks, client pamphlets, etc.
A second way is to prepare for each session, thinking about what you learned in the previous session and jotting down what you want to discuss in the next session.
A third way to maximize therapy is to make sure that you try to bring the therapy session into your everyday life. Therapists should make sure you take home notes or a recording of anything you want to remember, both changes in your thinking and an action plan to follow during the week.
Many patients notice a decrease in their symptoms within a few weeks of therapy, or even sooner, if they have been faithfully attending sessions and doing the suggested assignments between sessions on a daily basis.
An important first step is to set goals. Ask yourself, “How would I like to be different by the end of therapy?” Think specifically about changes you’d like to make at work, at home, in your relationships with family, friends, co-workers, and others. Think about what symptoms have been bothering you and which you’d like to decrease or eliminate. Think about other areas that would improve your life: pursuing spiritual/intellectual/cultural interests, increasing exercise, decreasing bad habits, learning new interpersonal skills, improving management skills at work or at home. Your therapist will help you develop a goal list and decide which goals you might be able to work toward on your own and which ones you might want to work on in therapy.
At each therapy session, cognitive behavior therapists help clients specify the problems they have encountered during the week or that they expect to encounter in the current week. They then collect data to identify the ideas and behaviors that have interfered with patients’ ability to solve problems themselves. Cognitive behavior therapists get clients actively engaged in deciding where to start working. Together, they develop an “action plan” or homework for patients (to do during the week) to implement solutions to problems or to make changes in their thinking and actions. This process gets clients actively involved in their own treatment; they begin to recognize that the way to get better is to make small changes in how they think and what they do every day. When treatment ends, clients are able to use the skills and tools they have learned in therapy in their day-to-day lives.

The Beck Institute Weight Management Program

Individual coaching, which provides one-on-one support with Program Director Deborah Beck Busis, LCSW. This is available throughout the year, with registration occurring on a rolling basis.
Group coaching with Ms. Busis or Dr. Francine Broder, PsyD. This is available on a periodic basis, with registration announcements occurring throughout the year. Sign up for our WM newsletter to be the first to know when the next group coaching series opens up.
Webinars hosted by Ms. Busis. These occur in tandem with the group coaching programs, though you do not need to register for the group coaching program to participate in the webinars. Please sign up for our newsletter to receive announcements regarding these periodic trainings.
Every application of CBT (whether it’s for weight management, or depression, or anxiety) is based on the Cognitive Model which states “what you think influences how you feel and what you do.” Often people believe that it’s the situation that automatically leads them to eat or drink something (“Because I had such a bad day at work I went home and overate dinner.”) But it’s actually someone’s thinking about the situation that leads them to eat (“I had such a bad day at work so I deserve to go home and eat a lot to help myself feel better.”)
CBT for Weight Management is all about figuring out what thoughts people are likely to have once they’re triggered to overeat, and come up with helpful responses to them so that they have a different outcome (“I had such a bad day at work but I know if I overeat I’ll feel mad about my day and mad about getting off track so instead I’m going decompress by doing a mindfulness meditation, calling my mom to vent, and taking a quick walk. Those things will help me feel better without sabotaging any of my other goals.”)
If you are looking for a long-term solution for weight loss and maintenance, then this program is right for you. We have coached hundreds of people on their paths to weight loss and maintenance by using tried and true strategies that work with any reasonable eating plan. The skills that individuals learn in our program are adaptable, empowering, and emphasize everyday choices that impact overall health.
We screen all prospective clients to our individual coaching program to make sure that they are appropriate candidates for this type of CBT weight management program.