What is Compassion Focused Therapy? (CFT)
Compassion-focused therapy (CFT) is a psychotherapy system created by Paul Gilbert that incorporates Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) methods with topics such as evolutionary psychology, social psychology, developmental psychology, Buddhist psychology and neuroscience. According to Gilbert, “One of his most important concerns is to use compassionate mind training to help people develop and work with inner warmth, security, and relaxing experiences through compassion and self-compassion.“
How Does Compassion Focused Therapy Work?
Compassion-focused therapy is a therapeutic approach based on a set of core principles that promote the idea that suffering and psychological problems occur as a result of social exclusion, misunderstanding, or rejection. The social neuroscience perspective enables us to understand how these experiences change our brain structure and functioning so that we behave in ways that may not be helpful.
Under What Conditions Is CFT Applied?
Essentially, suffering arises from three main things: Social exclusion, which means being shunned by others who are important to us, and inability to have needs met misunderstandings or rejections. In order to alleviate suffering from these three sources it’s necessary to develop self-compassion to meet one’s own needs for security, safety, kindness, and empathy; show compassion for oneself when they experience shame.
Gilbert and Proctor stated that patients receiving therapy could often identify incompatible patterns of thought (I am unpopular) and create alternative self-states (I am certain some people love me), but they do not find this process emotionally reliable. For this reason, the purpose of Compassion Focused Therapy (CFT) is to improve the sense of sincerity and emotional responses to patients within the therapeutic process. CFT accomplishes this through various exercises such as visualization, language self-development, and self-compassionate behaviors and habits.
CFT is used today in eating disorders, bipolar disorders, depression, shame, and other psychological conditions. CFT is an approach designed for clinical patients, but interventions that increase psychological relaxation are at an evolving value in both clinical and non-clinical populations. As part of the therapeutic intervention, compassion is seen as an important innovation that requires further research. CFT has been trying to understand that individuals cannot develop close relationships with them for 20 years.
Three Compassion Focused Therapy (CFT) Exercises
The concept of compassion goes beyond philosophy or religion. Sometimes we can’t understand how ordinary the most ordinary words really are. The word “compassion” represents a quality of life that helps us help ourselves and build a more respectful and humane world.
Psychologist Paul Gilbert has proposed a wide variety of techniques. These interesting suggestions range from behavioral strategies to cognitive and narrative strategies to Gestalt therapy and awareness. Now let’s learn some exercises based on compassionate therapy.
Creating a Safe Space for Yourself
Compassion-oriented therapy teaches something very important about compassion and mercy. You should start with yourself and continue on your way here. A person who is not affectionate to him cannot show compassion and compassion towards others. As a result, it is important not only to learn to love yourself but also to learn to love yourself. This includes developing certain powers, sensing your needs and fears, dealing with your pain, and stopping unpleasant thoughts.
This method can help you imagine that you are in a glasshouse. You are surrounded by a calm sea and soft light that illuminates everything. There is harmony and harmony in every corner. You are surrounded by peace. The interior of this glasshouse is a warm place where you feel safe. You can spend half an hour every day or as much time as you need in this mental refuge. You can talk to yourself honestly here. Leave your outside voices and fears at the door and enter.
Developing the Compassionate Self
Improving your compassionate self is one of the most important compassion-oriented therapy exercises. This particular task requires focusing on a particular key idea. First, be aware of your emotions, needs, and pains.
Stimulating the flow of compassion
An important skill in compassionate therapy is to stimulate the flow of compassion. What does it mean? It basically means letting the compassion you develop for yourself flow to others. You can do this exercise in many different ways. But the most important thing is to act with a real desire to improve the well-being of others. You have to embrace the other person with kindness and respect. Think positively and hopefully about people.
As a result, compassion-oriented therapy is not just about wishful thinking. It is essentially based on an undeniable scientific fact: Love heals and creates a change in us and others. It is a life force that can relieve compassion, fear, and anxiety. Let’s put this power into practice. Let’s make love a deliberate part of our lives.