Szentagotai, Aurora
March 2005
Journal of Cognitive & Behavioral Psychotherapies;Mar2005, Vol. 5 Issue 1, p83
Academic Journal
Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is based on the premise that human psychological problems stem from maladaptive cognitions. One of the most important tools used in CBT is cognitive restructuring that aims to change maladaptive cognitions and replace them with more adaptive ways of information processing. However, maladaptive thinking patterns are sometimes so strong and automatic that they tend to persist and bias the process of acquiring new adaptive ones. The goal of this article is to illustrate the development and implementation of two cognitive techniques for blocking the impact of mental contamination during cognitive restructuring by using fundamental research findings from cognitive psychology. After a brief introduction concerning relevant aspects in the literature, we describe two techniques hypothesized to control mental contamination: (a) the rational anticipation technique and (b) the incompatible information technique. The final section of the article focuses on illustrating the implementation of these techniques based upon a clinical case conceptualization.


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