Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is a popular therapy used to help people suffering from emotional, psychological and even physical problems. Its goal is to empower people to manage their problems by controlling how they think and behave.
For CBT to be successful, one of the critical requirements is meticulous record keeping. For easy assessment of the progress, each session has to be recorded in detailed. This is where CBT worksheets come in handy.
A CBT worksheet is a standardized sheet which is designed to simplify the implementation of CBT. Its ultimate goal is to enable a therapist to record pertinent information which is necessary for the success of the therapy.
Types of CBT Worksheets
There are actually two major types of CBT worksheets. These are implementation worksheets and tracking worksheets.
CBT implementation worksheets are intended to help therapists in designing and implementing CBT treatment plans. These worksheets are used by therapists when carrying out problem analysis, therapy scheduling, session planning, and other critical implementation tasks.
These worksheets usually present a template which therapists can use to design treatment plans. This makes it easy for any therapist to create a CBT treatment strategy which conforms to all the required standards.
CBT tracking worksheets are intended for tracking the progress of the therapy. They are basically used to record the progress of the therapy. These records are essential for analyzing the different strategies employed by the therapist to see what is working, and what isn’t working. This enables the therapist to be able to make informed decisions at critical points during the therapy.
The CBT tracking worksheets are of two types i.e. therapist-administered worksheets and self-practice worksheets.
Therapist Administered Worksheets
The therapist-administered tracking worksheets are managed by the therapist. The therapy uses them to for the following purposes:
- record what the therapy attendee tells them during sessions
- record their observations during sessions
- undertake assessments (by analyzing their records)
The self-practice worksheets (also known as CBT Homework Worksheets) are used by the therapy attendee. They are used by the attendee to record their thoughts and behaviors while away from the therapist.
The self-practice worksheets are essential because of the way CBT works. CBT is typically implemented through so-called “behavioral experiments”. These are basically behavioral exercises which patients are required to undertake as part of the treatment program.
The patients are usually required to observe their thoughts and reactions before, during and after the behavioral experiments. The self-practice worksheets enable them to keep a meticulous record of these thoughts and reactions. The records are analyzed by the therapist to track the progress of their treatment.
The self-practice CBT worksheets are sometimes used outside therapy settings. They can be used by individuals who want to implement simple CBT strategies for handling their problems. Although this isn’t widely encouraged, even non-professionals sometimes use CBT approaches for resolving their behavioral problems.
This self-help approach is used for those whose behavioral problems haven’t escalated to the point of requiring the intervention of a licensed therapist. In most cases, this self-help approach to CBT is used as a preventative mechanism to prevent escalations. For those who require this self-help approach, the self-practice CBT worksheets are created.
However, the cases of CBT worksheets getting used outside of therapy settings is rare. In most cases, even the self-practice worksheets are used in therapy sessions under the recommendation of a therapist.
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