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A-B-C Model

the construct stating that one's problems do not originate from events but from the beliefs one holds about those events. Changing one's beliefs is the best way to change negative feelings

Arbitrary Inferences

the distorted view of making conclusions without the basis of supporting and relevant exidence; part of Aaron Beck's cognitive therapy.

Automatic thoughts

ideas (usually outside one's awareness) triggered by a particular event that lead to emotional reactions

Cognitive Errors

misconceptions and wrong assumptions on the part of the client

Cognitive Homework

the process used to help a client learn to cope with anxiety and challenge irrational thinking

Cognitive restructuring

the process of replacing negative thoughts with positive thoughts and beliefs

Cognitive Therapy

a type of therapty focused on changing negative behavior by changing false thinking and beliefs

Collaborative Empiricism

a concept from Aaron Beck's cognitive therapy that views the client as capable of making objective interpretations of his or her behavior, with the collaboration of the therapist

Coping Skills Program

a set of procedures to help clients cope with stressful situations by changing their thinking

Disputational Methods

a method taught to clients in RET to help them challenge irrational beliefs

Distortion of Reality

inaccurate thinking causing one to act irrationally, emotionally, and subjectively

Internal Dialogue/Inner Speech

the process used to recognize irrational thoughts

Irrational Belief

an unreasonable thought leading to emotinal problems

Label and Mislabeling

the distorted view of basing one's identity on imperfections and mistakes made in the past.


the word used by Albert Ellis to descrbe beliefs grounded in musts, shoulds, and oughts; a rigid and absolute way of thinking


the distortied process of forming rigid beliefs based on a single event and then appying them to subsequent events


the tendency of individuals to relate events to themselves when there is no basis for this connection

Polarized thinking

a cognitive error based on an all-or-nothing framework. There are no gray areas in polarized thinking


a way of thinking that will help us attain our goals

Role Playing

the process of helping a client work through irrational beliefsby practicing new behaviors

Selective Abstraction

the distorted view of forming conclusions based on an isolated detail of an event

Self-Instructional Therapy

the concept that the self-talk an individual indulges in directly relates to the things he or she does in everyday life. The therapy consists of training the client to modify self-talk, a form of cognitive restructuring or cognitive-behavior modification developed by Donald Meichenbaum

Shame- Attacking Exercises

a technique of RET encouraging the individual to do things about which he or she feels shame without believing he or she is foolish or without becoming embarrassed

Stress-Inoculation Training

a cognitive-behavior modification technique aimed at giving the client the coping tools to restructure the thoughts that lead to stress, and to rehearse the behavior changes in order to solve the emotional problems caused by stressful situations

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