How Cognitive Behavioural Therapy helped Rebecca
Rebecca had been experiencing symptoms of anxiety and depression after the death of a family member. Since completing cognitive behavioural therapy, she has found ways to challenge her negative thought patterns and adopt a new mindset.
The Community Living Well Psychological Therapies service offers talking therapy or counselling that can help you if you are feeling stressed, worried, anxious or low in mood. We offer a range of therapy options, all of which are effective treatments recommended by the National Institute for Clinical Excellence.
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What led you to seek therapy with us?
Following a cancer diagnosis in the family and the breakdown of a relationship, I began to suffer with Anxiety and Depression. My GP referred me to Community Living Well about 5 years ago for similar issues and at the time accessed short-term help from their psychological therapies team. I got good results so felt confident about returning to the service for the second time. I was especially pleased that I was able to see the same therapist again as I felt very comfortable and safe talking to her
The therapist inspired me to find solutions to my problems by helping me deal with them in a positive way and breaking them down into smaller parts. Instead of just passively listening, she helped me to find practical ways to improve my state of mind on a daily basis. I started doing more exercise, writing a journal and making more of an effort to speak to people. Most importantly, I took time out to reflect on why I was feeling this way and to work on changing my negative thought patterns. I liked the homework that CBT provided as completing it made me feel like I was being proactive in my recovery
Did you overcome any particular challenges or obstacles before or during Cognitive Behavioural Therapy?
With my therapist’s help I learnt how to identify the negative voice inside of me. I began to recognise that the bad thoughts that had been weighing me down were a separate part of me rather than a reflection on who I was as a person. I was able to put up a barrier to stop them from getting in and I am now aware it’s just a voice that I don’t have to listen to.
How are you feeling now that you have just finished Cognitive Behavioural Therapy?
I found my sessions with the therapist to be very helpful. It was comforting at a time when I really needed support. I was reluctant to finish but at the same time I felt that she had provided me with all the tools I needed to carry on my journey alone and knew that the rest of the work had to come from me.
Do you have a plan for continuing your good work?
Yes, I will keep up the regular exercise and everyday awareness activities. I will also continue to work on not letting myself sink into negative thought patterns weighing me down were a separate part of me rather than a reflection on who I was as a person. I was able to put up a barrier to stop them from getting in and I am now aware it’s just a voice that I don’t have to listen to.
What advice would you give to others who are struggling with psychological issues and who may be nervous about asking for help?
I would encourage them to try and take the first few steps to recovery by visiting their GP. The stigma around mental health has noticeably declined in recent years. Asking a mental health professional for help is really just the same as asking them for help with a dodgy knee or back. The services are professional and empathetic, and they are there to help you through your lowest points.
Community Living Well is a mental health service for those registered with a GP in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, or the Queen’s Park and Paddington areas of Westminster. The services on offer include talking therapies, support groups, help with employment and support with debt, housing and benefits issues. Self-referrals can be made here. For more information please call 020 3317 4200.