When we’re anxious about something, it’s natural to want to avoid it. But avoidance is only a short term solution. Eventually we to need to face whatever’s making us anxious. And the longer we’ve been putting it off, the more anxiety we’ll feel when we have to do it. Or sometimes we may be able to avoid something that’s causing anxiety altogether this time. But then the next time we’re in a similar situation, it’s going to cause us even more anxiety.
In CBT, exposure therapy is an important B-for-behavioral technique to combat avoidance behaviors. Exposure therapy simply involves exposing ourselves to whatever is making us anxious, rather than avoiding it. And as we start to expose ourselves to the source of our anxiety—in other words, when we do things that cause us anxiety—we begin to feel more comfortable doing them, so they provoke less anxiety.
CBT, Anxiety and Exposure Therapy
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