CBT for Anxiety and Cognitive Restructuring

Cognitive restructuring is one of the main components of cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) for anxiety. The previous post provided a brief overview of cognitive restructuring in CBT. Now we’re going to look at how to use cognitive restructuring to manage anxiety.

We’ll examine some common types of negative thoughts and worries associated with anxiety. And then learn how to modify these thoughts with cognitive restructuring in ways that reduce our anxiety and make us less anxious.

CBT for Anxiety and Cognitive Restructuring

Cognitive restructuring is important in CBT because it helps us change how we’re thinking. And in CBT, changing our thoughts is one of the main ways we change how we feel. If we’re able to modify our worries and anxious thoughts in order to:

  • more accurately estimate a situation’s level of threat and danger
  • consider outcomes other than the worst case scenario
  • feel more confident in our abilities to cope with negative outcomes

then we’ll start to reduce our anxiety.

The questions in the Cognitive Restructuring for Anxiety Worksheet [download PDF] or [download Word] can help with cognitive restructuring of worries and anxious thoughts.

Next we’ll learn how to complete a worry record. The worry record is a thought record that’s been modified to focus on worries, and guides us through the process of cognitive restructuring for anxiety. If you have any questions or comments, please leave them on the YouTube video page.