CBT & Behavior Therapy

Theories of Counseling

Behavior Therapy

Behavior therapy focuses on the observable behavior,current determinants of behavior, learning experiences to promote change, tailoring treatments, assessments and evaluation. Behavior therapist use evidence based practice, implementing techniques such as social skills training, relaxation training, cognitive therapy and mindfulness strategies(Corey, 2013). This therapy is present focused and used on a wide range of clients for specific problems. In 1960, Albert Bandura developed the social learning theory involving classical and operant conditioning with observational learning. External factors influence thoughts, beliefs, and behaviors. The current view is that the person is the producer and the the product of his or her environment(Corey,2013). Clients take an active role in deciding on what specific behavior they choose to change, agree upon goals, assessment, and the evaluation process. Treatment and assessment are interrelated and occur simultaneously (Corey, 2013).
Goals of treatment (Corey, 2013).
(1) Select goals: making them measurable, attainable, positive, and significant
(2) Translate goals into target behaviors
(3) Self monitor: client observes his behavior systematically (behavioral diary).
(4) Make a plan for change:
(5) Evaluating the action plan: adjust and revise as needed

Cognitive Behavior Therapy

Cognitive Behavior Therapy is a treatment that focuses on the relationship between thoughts, feelings, and behavior. This approach combines both behavior and cognitive principles and methods and use most commonly used today. As is Behavior therapy, CBT is short term, present focused, collaboration between client and therapist to reach goals that modify thought to change behaviors. CBT enables individuals to be more aware of how dysfunctional thoughts of a situation can influence behavior. Clients are taught skills to address their concerns and presenting problem to improve feelings by changing their beliefs. Mindfulness and acceptance techniques, homework in session and out of session are used.
Goals of Treatment:
(1) orient patient to the CBT principles and methods, (provide handouts)
(2) identify behaviors: discuss activities to find out what the client likes to do, or wishes to accomplish.
(3)Set up action plan: form a meaningful or specific goal of the clients concern, prioritize these goals.
(4)Monitor progress: make changes if needed, or break down goal into steps if client is struggling(Cully & Teten, 2009).

Procrastination-Behavior Therapy approach

Since behavioral therapy focuses on how external forces influence behavior, I feel this approach would be useful for treating someone with procrastination. I will use procrastination of homework as an example. The client would need to address the concern for change. If he is motivated and wants to change this behavior he will need to set goals, the client and therapist could talk about some of the reasons things get put off till a later date. If the client is distracted by a certain person or object, the client decides what distractions he wants to eliminate. The client can choose a goal as far as how much time would he/she like to spend on homework each day. It would be a good idea to assess this goal on paper to allow the client to see the effort or lack of. A daily log can be used to record time spent on homework. At the next session, follow up on the clients progress will be made to evaluate whether the goals need any modifications. This will allow the client to see his/her progress and feel capable of making choices and change on his own.


Corey, G. (2013). Theory and practice of counseling and psychotherapy (9th Ed.). Brooks/Cole Cengage Publishing. Belmont, CA.

Cully & Teten (2009). Cully, J. A., & Teten, A. L. (2009, November 4). A therapist guide to CBT. Retrieved May 31, 2015, from tps://www.google.com/search?q=www.mirecc.va.gov+therapist+guide+to+brief+cbt&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8