Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT)
“I feel like my emotions rule my life.”
“I’m either disconnected or overwhelmed by my emotions.”
“People always tell me that I’m ‘too sensitive.’”
“My therapist tells me to connect with my feelings, but I just feel ‘numb.’”
“I feel out of control and unable to change.”
If you’ve ever found yourself saying things like this, then Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) may be a helpful part of your therapeutic process. DBT is a cognitive-behavioral psychosocial skills training program.
What Does DBT Skills Training Involve?
DBT skills include the four treatment modules of: mindfulness, distress tolerance, emotion regulation, and interpersonal effectiveness. The mindfulness skills are central to DBT and are the first skills taught in order to help you develop awareness of thoughts, emotions, and behavioral patterns. Distress tolerance skills then teach individuals to tolerate and survive life as it happens, without relying on destructive behaviors as coping mechanisms. These skills are targeted at decreasing impulsivity and increasing self-care. Dysfunctional behaviors, including eating disorders, substance abuse, and self harm, are frequently the client’s solution to intolerable painful emotions. Therefore, learning skills to regulate emotions is the next beneficial step. Specifically, clients will learn to identify, label, and manage any emotion that may occur as it happens. Finally, the interpersonal effectiveness skills include strategies for maintaining healthy relationships. This involves learning how to cope with interpersonal conflict, reach out to others in appropriate ways, and set healthy boundaries.
These DBT skills can be learned as part of a group or individual therapy. DBT coaching is utilized as a helpful adjunct treatment to decrease negative behaviors and help you apply new skills in real life situations.
DBT is one of the most extensively researched treatments available, and consistently shows decreased impulsivity, suicidality, and harmful behaviors in clients participating in DBT for at least one year. The skills in DBT are necessary for a healthy life, and with practice can be implemented regardless of a client’s diagnosis.
At A New Beginning, we are proud to offer both individualized DBT coaching and a DBT group for adult men and women.
Individualized DBT Life Skills Training
We offer one-on-one DBT training to help people learn how to apply these skills to the specific issues present in their lives. This individualized training is a great foundation for most therapy clients and is a beneficial addition for clients already working with an individual therapist.