Goal-Oriented Therapy

Goal-Oriented Therapy is a therapy that begins with the end in mind. It is not necessarily a specific form of psychotherapy, but usually it is cognitive and/or behavioral in nature. Cognitive behavioral therapy is goal-oriented and focused by definition: to correct problems in thinking and behavior that cause emotional distress and perpetuate a maladaptive pattern (strong life theme or schema). At the beginning of therapy, the specific problem to be focused on is identified, and the goal of the therapy is explicitly acknowledged. Some other common descriptors used for cognitive behavioral therapy include “brief,” “time-limited,” and “solution-focused.”

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy has been demonstrated by many research studies to be the most effective approach to therapy for a variety of psychological problems. The therapy relationship is collaborative and goal-oriented, and the focus on thoughts, beliefs, assumptions and behaviors is key. In CBT, the goal is for a person to develop more realistic and rational perspectives, and make healthier behavioral choices, as well as to feel relief from negative emotional states. Specific techniques, strategies and methods are used to help people to improve their mood, relationships and work performance.

Schema Therapy is essentially an integration of cognitive, behavioral, gestalt and psychodynamic approaches, using the best aspects of each in a unified therapy. It is similar to CBT (standard cognitive behavioral therapy) in that the person learns how to correct his or her habitual and problematic patterns of thinking and feeling, and the corresponding difficulties in behavioral coping style. The focus is on identifying and understanding, and then challenging and overcoming the long-standing maladaptive patterns in thinking, feeling and behavior that create obstacles for a person in getting needs met and attaining life goals. The goal is for the person to feel better and enjoy greater life satisfaction.

CTA is a network of experienced therapists in the NY metro area who provide Cognitive Therapy and Schema-Focused Therapy. To inquire about an appointment, please call us at 212-258-2577.

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