Psychotherapy Services in South West London

CBT and Therapeutic Relationship

An important premise for CBT is that the cause of client distress is maladaptive thinking. The therapist role is one of authority in the relationship as a result of the knowledge acquired during clinical training and the research evidence for CBT’s effectiveness. This authority enables the therapist to alter the maladaptive thoughts of the client. The expert trap is when the therapist falls into the trap of taking up the role of the expert who has all the answers to clients’ problems. The consequence of this can be that clients no longer feel responsible for resolving their own problems and a s a result feel disempowered. It may be more fruitful to consider the power dynamics as multi directional recognising the therapist as more knowledgeable about the process of CBT and the clients more knowledgeable about themselves. The in collaboration the therapist becomes an active instructor in the process but an active learner about the client and vice versa.

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