Utilising Behavioural Activation to treat Anxiety and Depression

Behaviour Analysts conceptualise depression as the direct consequence of reduced contact and/or access to the positive elements of our daily lives (Lewinsohn & Shaffer, 1971). Behavioural Activation is a highly adaptable treatment which can be customised to a client's particular needs and circumstances to reverse the symptoms of anxiety and depression (Boswell et al., 2017). 

Together we will spend time analysing your daily experiences, both identifying those activities which provide you pleasure and enjoyment whilst also identifying those activities which are increasing your risk of experiencing periods of depression. At the same time we will work together to explore and overcome the specific circumstances which are limiting your capacity to access the more pleasurable and enjoyable aspects of life. 

Once we have identified the specific factors that contribute to your depression we will jointly program daily changes to your routines, which when supported with the principles of positive reinforcement will begin to reverse these depressive factors. At the same time we can begin reevaluating your daily, medium and long-term goals helping you develop the direction and motivation needed to maintain the progress you make.  

Behavioural Activation is believed to be a driving force behind the efficacy of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy  (C.B.T.: Jacobson et., al, 1996). Through their studies into the behavioural factors underpinning human behaviour Behaviour Analysts are fully trained and experts at maximising this treatment for the benefit of their clients.


Boswell, J. F., Iles, B. R., Gallagher, M. W., & Farchione, T. J. (2017). Behavioral activation strategies in cognitive-behavioral       therapy for anxiety disorders. Psychotherapy, 54(3), 231.

Jacobson, N. S., Dobson, K. S., Truax, P. A., Addis, M. E., Koerner, K., Gollan, J. K., ... & Prince, S. E. (1996). A component           analysis of cognitive-behavioral treatment for depression. Journal of consulting and clinical psychology, 64(2), 295.

Lewinsohn, P. M., & Shaffer, M. (1971). Use of home observations as an integral part of the treatment of depression:                   Preliminary report and case studies. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 37(1), 87.

Utilising Cognitive Restructuring to treat Stress, Anxiety, Unhealthy Coping Mechanisms and Low Confidence and Self Esteem


Behaviour Analysts utilise Cognitive Restructuring (C.R.: Ellis, 2003) as an active component of a comprehensive treatment package for a number of mental health conditions. Cognitive restructuring aims to identify and rebuild the incorrect thought patterns that are individually or in combination having a negative impact upon a person's well being e.g., black and white thinking, catastrophising, overgeneralisation and personalisation (Mills, Reiss, & Dombeck, 2008). 

Together we will utilise scientific behavioural principles to effectively assess the inaccurate thought patterns contributing to your symptoms, leading to the creation of a bespoke treatment plan and ultimately an evaluation of the progress you have made. Treatment begins with an exploration of the often limited evidence to support the inaccurate thought. This often inaccurate and distorted evidence is then counterbalanced by a thorough exploration of the evidence that disproves the inaccurate unhelpful thought. Once the inaccuracy of your unhelpful thought has been exposed we will begin replacing it by generating a new positive and more healthy replacement thought pattern. If required a process to maintain this new thought can be implemented through the utilisation of positive reinforcement principles and/or behavioural experimentation. 



Ellis, A. (2003). Cognitive restructuring of the disputing of irrational beliefs. Cognitive behavior therapy: Applying                       empirically supported techniques in your practice, 79-83.

Mills, H., Reiss, N., & Dombeck, M. (2008). Cognitive restructuring. Mental Help Net. Retrievedfrom https://www.                       mentalhelp.net/articles/cognitive-restructuring-info.