Goal of DBT
DBT aims to help clients accept their emotions while simultaneously changing their reactions. This is something that may seem “normal” for someone who is not up against a BPD diagnosis, but for those who are, the concept is one that must be learned. Someone who goes through DBT can come out with exceptional results and new behavioral skills.
Teachings in DBT
Sometimes the smallest skills that DBT teaches someone can make the biggest impact. Here are four of the target teachings when it comes to DBT:
Being able to tolerate levels of stress during a crisis may not come naturally to someone with BPD. Their typical cognition may instead be paralyzed by incessant thoughts of why they cannot change a certain situation. Distress tolerance teaching will help the client come to terms with the general idea that some things cannot be changed and that it is okay even if it doesn't feel right.
Being mindful of your surroundings without passing judgements is yet another skill taught in DBT under the term “mindfulness.” Clients in DBT will learn the beauty of observation independent of control. Part of being mindful also means acknowledging emotions and feelings as they arise without passing judgement on yourself.
Setting appropriate boundaries and being able to say no is an important part of BPD treatment if the client is to recover long term. DBT will teach clients how and when to set these boundaries while still maintaining healthy friendships and relationships with those around them. Clients will also be taught how to defend those boundaries appropriately.
It is unhealthy to allow your emotions to completely control your thoughts and actions. DBT teaches people working through their diagnosis how alternative methods like journaling can allow them to organize and manage their emotions in a healthy way. Human emotions cannot be controlled, but in order to live a healthy life, we must find ways to not let those emotions, no matter how strong, control our lives.
BPD No More is a mental health service located in London, Ontario. The service does not aim to replace therapy but instead to add to your existing therapy. If you have been diagnosed with BPD, speak with owner Dee Chan and set up a consultation appointment!
The difference between CONTROLLING and MANAGING emotions is subtle but it is an important distinction for clients to understand before starting any of my courses because I will teach you how to manage your emotions, not control them.
DBT is usually taught in a series of four modules.
Many people have benefitted from DBT including Lady Gaga who spoke frankly and openly about her struggles with her mental health Lady Gaga.