How Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Can Help Us Better Understand the Black Lives Matter Movement
Updated: Sep 10
Written by Tomeika S. Leavell, LCSW
Most human beings have implicit biases. And that’s okay, as long as we are aware of them and aware of how our attitudes affect others.
In the United States, black people have lived through a long history of violence and social injustice. With the recent deaths of George Floyd and Rayshard Brooks, the Black Lives Matter movement has organized many protests around the nation, inspiring people from all walks of life to take a long hard look at themselves and their own beliefs.
To this end, cognitive behavioral therapy, or CBT for short, can help us all better understand the Black Lives Matter movement and how we can help heal the divide among the races. The entire goal of CBT is to change a person’s thought patterns in order to change their responses to difficult situations.
CBT combines psychotherapy and behavioral therapy. Psychotherapy emphasizes the importance of the personal meaning each individual places on events and circumstances. Behavioral therapy looks at the relationship between our thoughts, our problems, and our subsequent behaviors. Most therapists who practice CBT personalize the therapy to the specific needs and personality of each client.
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy has been used for decades to treat adults, families, children, and adolescents. It has shown great success in treating depression, general anxiety disorder, PTSD, stress, anger issues, OCD, and marital difficulties. It has been so successful in treating myriad mental conditions precisely because it helps individuals reframe what they think about a particular belief or event. It is for this reason that I and other therapists have begun to use CBT to help people understand the BLM movement and how they can help it grow and make powerful changes.
Finding the Right CBT Therapist
If you are interested in exploring CBT treatment, it’s important to look for a licensed therapist with specialized training and experience. Beyond these credentials, it’s also important to look for an individual you feel comfortable with.
If you are interested in exploring CBT, please reach out to me. I would be happy to discuss how I may be able to help.
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