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Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT)

Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT) is a common form of psychotherapy today. DBT was created by Dr. Marsha Linehan as a treatment for Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD). In DBT, clients learn four basic skills: mindfulness meditation, interpersonal effectiveness, distress tolerance, and emotional regulation.

Mindfulness Meditation

In mindfulness meditation, clients are taught to concentrate on being fully in the present moment. These skills include learning to observe and describe all experiences, including thoughts, emotions, and sensations, without judging them as “good” or “bad.”

Interpersonal Effectiveness

The skills involved in interpersonal effectiveness teach the client how to properly assert their needs while maintaining their relationships as well as their self-respect. These skills are crucial when it comes to managing conflicts.

Distress Tolerance

In distress tolerance, clients are taught how to tolerate distress without resorting to actions that may further exacerbate the situation, such as engaging in self-harming behaviour. People with BPD may act in impulsive and dangerous ways when experiencing strong emotions.

Emotional Regulation

Emotional regulation skills help clients to recognize and control their emotional reactions. This can involve either reducing or enhancing emotions as a means of helping people with BPD process and express their emotions in a healthy manner.

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