What Is Mindfulness-Based Therapy?
If you are experiencing depression, anxiety, or another mental health condition, you might struggle to practice self-care or know where to turn. With one in five adults in the US diagnosed with a mental illness, many forms of therapy have been developed to offer relief and professional guidance. One popular modern treatment method is mindfulness based therapy, a research-backed psychotherapy that uses aspects of mindfulness and meditation.
How Does Mindfulness-Based Therapy Work?
Mindfulness therapy teaches clients how to react to their thoughts, environment, and relationships using present-moment techniques to reduce negative emotions and overwhelm. It can combat dissociation, anxiety, worrying thoughts, stress, and chronic pain.
This process is commonly referred to as mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT), one of the mindfulness based interventions specifically designed to treat symptoms of recurrent major depressive disorder. A systematic review and meta analysis of randomised controlled trials have shown that MBCT is effective in increasing the chances of symptom remission and reducing the relapse of unwanted behaviors.
Mindfulness therapy involves changing how you think about yourself and your circumstances using meditative practices and other mindfulness exercises. Instead of automatically responding to events, you can learn to observe them. Observance, acceptance, and labeling are a few common strategies in this technique, helping individuals break negative thought patterns under the guidance of an MBCT therapist.
Judgments may arise for many individuals experiencing depression or another mental health condition. Depressive episodes may increase the likelihood of responding critically to events, and self-criticism or feelings of hopelessness may occur. When clients use mindfulness therapy, they can often objectively observe their situation and negative thoughts, instead of immediately judging themselves or their emotions. It can also allow them to feel centered in their bodies, reducing distressing feelings of losing control.
Although mindfulness can be done at home on your own, a therapist can guide you through the practices and provide emotional support in a group setting. In addition, you can use your session time to discuss any stressors or concerns that might be contributing to your symptoms. Clinical psychology review and psychosomatic research suggest that you do not need to have depression or a mental illness to attend mindfulness-based therapy. These techniques, based on basic principles of mindfulness, may benefit anyone interested in learning them.
Is Mindfulness-Based Therapy Effective?
If traditional counseling and therapy methods aren't beneficial for you, you might find mindfulness-based counseling effective. This form of therapy can be completed in a group or one-on-one. Many clients of traditional therapy report the return of depression symptoms after a certain period. However, those using MBCT report fewer relapses of symptoms or behaviors after partaking in the modality.
If you're attending this form of therapy for depression, one of the main goals of therapy is fully understanding and learning about depression. A therapist can help you delve into your symptoms and understand how they impact you. They can work with you to understand what situations might cause symptoms to arise and how you can practice mindfulness in those moments as a prevention strategy.
Once you have objectively examined your symptoms, you can notice when they occur and why. Mindfulness therapy can help you identify patterns between your thoughts, behaviors, and symptoms. For example, extreme self-judgment may cause harm.
Those seeking therapy might not seek help out of fear, embarrassment, or shame. In addition, leaving home during a depressive episode can be challenging. Know there are options when it comes to your mental healthcare. Online therapy might benefit you if you're not ready to meet a mental health professional in person.
Online therapy offers licensed professionals with the same or similar credentials as in-person therapists. The method can be more reachable, cost-effective, and flexible than traditional therapy and allows you to speak to a therapist whenever it is convenient for you to do so. In addition, studies on online mindfulness-based cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) found that internet-based interventions were as effective as in-person therapy for treating symptoms of anxiety and depression.
Signing up for a platform like BetterHelp can take a few minutes, and you'll receive a therapist match within 48 hours or less. In addition, you can meet with a provider specializing in your specific symptoms or preferred form of mental health therapy, including those who practice mindfulness-based therapy.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Below are a few frequently asked questions on the topic of mindfulness therapy.
What Is Mindfulness Therapy Used For?
Mindfulness therapy can be used for any symptoms, including stress, depression, anxiety disorders, borderline personality disorder (BPD), or other mental illnesses. Some people use mindfulness to cope with the emotional impact of chronic pain.
What Type Of Therapy Is Mindfulness Therapy?
Mindfulness therapy is considered a cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), often referred to as mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT). When combined with talk therapy, mindfulness techniques redirect a client's attention to the present moment rather than distressing thoughts. Since mindfulness practices involve changing an individual's thoughts and behaviors, it includes techniques similar to CBT.
Mindfulness interventions are also often associated with other psychological stress management techniques, such as mindfulness meditation programs and deep breathing exercises that can be used independently of talk therapy.
What Are Examples Of Mindfulness-Based Practices?
A few mindfulness practices you can use in cognitive therapy include focusing on controlling your breathing, performing a body scan, and stretching. These activities shift your attention toward physical sensations instead of thoughts or feelings. Mindfulness meditation and yoga can be engaging ways to practice these skills.
Is Mindfulness The Same As CBT?
Mindfulness is not the same as CBT, as mindfulness is an exercise, and CBT is a type of therapy. CBT that incorporates mindfulness practices is known as mindfulness-based therapy. Cognitive-behavioral therapy also utilizes other techniques, like cognitive restructuring, distress tolerance, or interpersonal skills. When used with the guidance of a mental health professional, mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT) and CBT can be effective forms of support.
Is Mindfulness Effective For Anxiety?
Yes, mindfulness exercises can reduce anxiety. Since these practices reduce the impact of cognitive distortions or distressing thought patterns, the racing thoughts that often come with anxiety may be reduced.
What Are The Three Components Of Mindfulness?
The three components of mindfulness include:
In mindfulness, you are asked to pay attention to the present without labeling your thoughts or providing judgment. You use intention and a positive attitude to ensure the activity's success. The non-judgmental approach to mindfulness is emphasized in clinical psychology, health education, and by mental health professionals worldwide.
What Is The Theory Behind Mindfulness?
Mindfulness-based practices are often associated with the theory that mindful action makes emotional control achievable. It can feel easy to get trapped in a negative thought pattern. However, by utilizing mindfulness practices, individuals can focus on their surroundings and physical sensations instead. When combined with other relaxation training techniques, those experiencing distressing thoughts may start to see improvements.
How Do You Incorporate Mindfulness In Therapy?
Mindfulness exercises can be used in any type of therapy. To practice it, remember the three mindfulness components and apply them to the specific therapy you're trying. Some forms of therapy that involve a structured schedule, like dialectical behavior therapy (DBT), teach about mindfulness as a module. DBT offers various mindfulness worksheets and skills unique to the modality. Ask your therapist if you're interested in practicing more mindfulness in your sessions.
Is Mindfulness Therapy Evidence-Based?
The concept of mindfulness was developed thousands of years ago, often used in Buddhist spirituality and religion. Today, mindfulness is used in clinical work as a secular practice. A systematic review of mindfulness-based interventions like mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR) and mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT) found that both strategies can effectively treat depression, anxiety, and mood disorders.
The randomized clinical trial showed that mindfulness-based stress reduction was also effective in preventing relapses in symptoms, leading to the development of mindfulness-based relapse prevention therapy (MBRP).
Who founded mindfulness-based therapy?
What is mindfulness therapy for anxiety?
What is the goal of mindfulness-based cognitive therapy?
What religion is mindfulness-based on?
Is mindfulness therapy part of CBT?
What is the difference between CBT and mindfulness?
- Previous Article
- Next Article