One approach to mental health treatment that has gained significant recognition and acclaim for its effectiveness is Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT). Originally developed by psychologist Dr. Marsha M. Linehan in the late 1980s, DBT has since become a cornerstone in addressing a wide range of mental health challenges, particularly those associated with emotional dysregulation. With its unique blend of acceptance and change-oriented strategies, DBT has proven to be a powerful tool in assisting individuals in achieving emotional balance and building a life worth living.
A few years ago, I took a DBT class at the CSB in my county. It was very helpful to me as I learned skills to regulate the stress response I was experiencing at the time. There were many handouts weekly that were great resources to practice. The key word is “practice”. Healing doesn’t come only from the outside. DBT is a self-directed practice of various skills that build upon each other.
DBT is rooted in the concept of dialectics, which recognizes the interplay between acceptance and change. The therapy focuses on four key modules: mindfulness, distress tolerance, emotional regulation, and interpersonal effectiveness. These modules combine elements of cognitive-behavioral therapy, mindfulness practices, and validation techniques to provide a holistic approach to treatment.
One of the primary benefits of DBT is its efficacy in addressing borderline personality disorder (BPD). Individuals with BPD often struggle with intense emotional swings, self-destructive behaviors, and relationship difficulties. DBT equips them with skills to manage their emotions, enhance self-awareness, and build healthier relationships. Moreover, DBT has shown promise in treating other mental health conditions such as depression, anxiety disorders, substance abuse, and eating disorders.
DBT’s unique blend of acceptance and change strategies enables individuals to navigate challenging emotions, reduce impulsive behaviors, and enhance their interpersonal skills. It provides practical tools to tolerate distressing situations, regulate emotions effectively, and make conscious choices when faced with life’s challenges.
Perhaps it is a modality that will help you on your path to healing and recovery.
Here is a link with more information. Although we can do our healing work on our own, I do think that having a caring person navigate with you is helpful.