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Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT)

Take Control of Your Life for a Better You and a Better View

By Dr. Allison Bashe, Licensed Psychologist

Have you ever felt confused about what you are feeling or experiencing?  Do you have a tendency to act impulsively?  Do you feel like you are on an emotional roller coaster?  Do you have problems getting what you want in your relationships or problems maintaining relationships?

Perhaps you have difficulties with all of the above?

Sometimes we are born with a tendency to be very sensitive and overly reactive.  This tendency may be especially difficult for you if it is combined with an early environment in which your feelings were not validated.  This combination can leave you feeling as if you are not in control of your emotions, and that your emotions are in control of you.

Dialectical Behavior Therapy

Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) is a specific type of cognitive-behavior therapy developed by Dr. Marsha Linehan that can help you to understand your emotional experiences better, act more skillfully, gain better control over your emotions, and/or help you to maintain healthy relationships.

There are four main skills you will build in DBT:

  1. Mindfulness
  2. Distress tolerance
  3. Emotion regulation
  4. Interpersonal effectiveness

How will Mindfulness skills help you?

  • You will learn how to relax and calm yourself
  • You will learn to better identify your emotional responses in order to live more skillfully, manage your anger, and improve your relationships and work performance
  • You will learn how to be more present in the moment by improving focus and attention, decreasing distractions, decreasing rumination of past mistakes and decreasing anxiety about your future
  • You will learn how to better control your stress levels
  • You will learn how to accept your present reality and feel more peaceful as a result

How will Distress Tolerance skills help you?

  • You will learn how to take the focus off the negative in your life and focus on the positive
  • You will learn how to soothe yourself when painful experiences or emotions arise
  • You will learn how to make better choices for a healthier you
  • You will learn how to distinguish between the things you can and cannot control in your life

How will Emotion Regulation skills help you?

  • You will learn how to identify and describe your emotions
  • You will learn how to take charge of your emotions through healthy behaviors
  • You will learn how to manage negative emotions when they arise
  • You will learn how to increase positive emotions in your life

How will Interpersonal Effectiveness skills help you?

  • You will learn how to get more of what you want in your relationships
  • You will learn how to give in healthy ways to others in relationships
  • You will learn how to do both of the above while increasing your respect for yourself and others in your life

At New Directions Counseling Services, LLC, we can help you get back into the driver’s seat in your life.  Contact us today for an appointment with our clinicians and psych med providers! 724-934-3905

Source: Linehan, M. (1993). Skills Training Manual for Treating Borderline Personality Disorder. Guilford Press.