Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Daily Life

Course No. 9661
Professor Jason M. Satterfield, Ph.D.
University of California, San Francisco
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Course No. 9661
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What Will You Learn?

  • numbers Identify when your emotions are negatively affecting your behaviors
  • numbers Learn how to assess your own thoughts
  • numbers Rebuild the stories you tell yourself about your life

Course Overview

You talk to yourself all day long. We all do. Most of what we say carries no emotional weight: “Don’t forget to pick up the milk and bread.” Or, “I want to mention that book to my brother.” But sometimes, what we tell ourselves affects the very quality of our lives. We tell ourselves that we aren’t good enough, that our circumstances define us, that we can’t fix or change the things that seem to be weighing us down. This negative self-talk can follow us all day long and deeply impact our lives, whether we notice it or not.

How do we combat this negativity, especially when we seem to carry it around without really realizing the effect it can have on our daily life and its impact our mental health and happiness?

In the 24 compelling half-hour lectures of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Daily Life, Professor Jason Satterfield will help you build your own cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) toolbox, giving you the skills you need to change those stories that hold you back and that keep you from experiencing your fullest life possible. Just like your physical toolbox, you’ll learn exactly which tools to gather and how and when to use each one most effectively. These tools aren’t magical quick-fixes, and they can’t accomplish everything you might want. But in using them appropriately, you will be building a life that is both more powerful and more peaceful than you had ever imagined.

Our previous course with Professor Satterfield on this subject, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy: Techniques for Retraining Your Brain, introduced the concept of CBT and demonstrated how it works and the ways it can be applied. This new addition to our exploration of CBT will help you further introduce these techniques and thought patterns into your daily life; it presents an array of new tools and many new scenarios to help you see CBT in action. These courses can be watched separately or as a pair, and both can be easily understood and applied on their own.

CBT: A Problem-Solving Approach

CBT was originally developed in the 1960s by a psychiatrist who had been using psychoanalysis to help his depressed patients—a process that could sometimes take years. But through experimental work, he discovered something he found completely surprising: His depressed patients were constantly experiencing streams of spontaneous, negative thoughts about themselves, the world, and their future. As he helped his patients evaluate these thoughts, they began to think more realistically, feel better emotionally, and function better. And the results of this emerging therapy were long-lasting.

The CBT approach helps us because it’s almost never just the situation at hand that directly affects our emotional health—it’s our thoughts about the situation. We’ve all seen this in our own lives when we’ve witnessed one divorced friend sink into a years-long downward spiral, while another divorced friend rebuilds his or her life. We’ve seen one family member with a chronic illness withdraw into the smallest possible life while another person with the same illness maintains an interest in life and emotional growth. Divorce and chronic illness both present significant difficulties, but it’s how the person addresses those challenges that can make all the difference.

While CBT cannot put the marriage back together after divorce or miraculously cure physical illness, the CBT tools you’ll learn to use in this course will help you address many of life’s challenges in a way that best nourishes your emotional health. Those challenges might include:

  • Grief after the loss of a loved one;
  • Coping with chronic pain;
  • Marital conflicts;
  • Difficulties with coworkers;
  • Parenting challenges;
  • End-of-life issues; and more.

Building Your Personal CBT Toolbox

As Professor Satterfield demonstrates, the best way to envision CBT is to think of an equilateral triangle with the points representing behavior, cognition, and emotions. Each of these points influences the other two, with information and effects streaming in both directions. It is that intricate relationship between our behavior, cognition, and emotions that forms the foundation of CBT’s problem-solving tools. With the appropriate tools and skills for each situation, we can move toward “Wise Mind”—the equilibrium where we can best access the strength of both our rational and emotional selves to address the problem at hand.

In this skills-based course, you will learn about both cognitive and behavioral tools, each of which will help you move toward better emotion regulation and functional improvements. Among the CBT tools you will learn how to use and benefit from in this course are:

  • Self-assessment,
  • Thought records,
  • Activity scheduling,
  • Problem-Solving Therapy,
  • Exposure Therapy,
  • Somatic Quieting, and
  • Behavioral Activation.

And while you might not need to use every CBT tool right now, you will find some that can be applied in a wide variety of situations. Over time, as you really learn to incorporate CBT into your own life through practice, you might develop “favorite” CBT tools that seem to be the most beneficial for you with the greatest efficacy in the shortest amount of time.

Watching CBT in Action

In Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Daily Life, you’ll have the opportunity to be the proverbial fly on the wall of the therapist’s office. As you see actors portraying clients, you see Dr. Satterfield discussing his thoughts about the clients—explaining what he learns from what they do say and do not say, their body language, their willingness to take on and accomplish homework assignments, and more. He also explains which specific CBT tool(s) he chooses for each of the six clients and why:

  • Amanda, a 27-year-old single college graduate who moved back in with her parents after not being able to find a good job. Four years later, she is still there, resentful and afraid she will never have the future she imagined and worked so hard for.
  • Christian, a 35-year-old single man who has been struggling with insomnia for seven years, tossing and turning for hours before becoming exhausted enough to finally sleep.
  • David, a 73-year-old married father and grandfather whose colon cancer returned after earlier chemotherapy and surgery. The cancer is now inoperable, and David knows he is facing the end of his life.
  • Miriam, a 63-year-old widow and mother who works in school administration and worries about her finances and health. She recently lost her own mother and is tearful, sometimes depressed, and worries all the time.
  • Scott, a 50-year-old man who has become physically dependent on the high-dose opioids he has taken for years in response to back pain. Frustrated and angry, he feels betrayed by his doctors who now want him to taper off the drugs.
  • Stephen, a 44-year-old single man who describes himself as neurotic and sensitive. He copes with his anxiety by being quiet and detached, but then feels left out and overlooked. He often turns his hurt feelings into anger and withdraws from others.

Since several of these clients are shown in multiple sessions over time, you’ll see first-hand how they benefit from the implementation of CBT in their lives. And as you follow these clients, you’ll be developing the CBT tools you can use to help yourself and maybe those you love. These tools and skills will not only help you address problems, but will also help you learn to create and savor positive experiences that bring greater happiness, satisfaction, and meaning to your life.

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24 lectures
 |  Average 30 minutes each
  • 1
    A CBT Toolbox: Toward Wise Living
    Learn why cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is such a powerful and effective therapy to help you move toward Wise Mind—that state where your emotions and cognition are working together, each from its own strength, to support you in your best possible life. You’ll meet Amanda, David, and Miriam and watch their initial CBT sessions. x
  • 2
    Laying a Foundation: Assessments and Goals
    A full self-assessment is a foundational CBT skill, giving you a good sense of your strengths and areas for improvement. And as you move forward in your therapy, self-assessment will show you whether or not you've been progressing toward your goals. Learn how to access the NIH's free PROMIS system to collect the data you'll need for your self-assessment and case formulation. x
  • 3
    Behavioral Activation: Potent Mood Boosters
    While you already know your emotions can affect your behaviors, the reverse is also true. For example, have you ever noticed that you seem to be in a better mood after exercise or watching a funny movie? Explore the umbrella concept of behavioral activation and learn the important ABCs of behavior—antecedents, behavior, and consequences—to make them work for you. x
  • 4
    Advanced Behavioral Techniques
    Learn about the numerous techniques for somatic quieting, including some that Dr. Satterfield has begun to use for himself. Watch as he suggests various behavioral activations for both Amanda and David. Although their issues and needs are very different, you'll see that behavioral activation is an important CBT tool for both. x
  • 5
    Capturing Thoughts and Making Connections
    As you investigate your two distinct systems of cognition, you will immediately recognize the roles they have both played in your life. Explore how your personal habits of mind and habits of selective attention have affected your own behavior and emotions. Watch as Dr. Satterfield works with Miriam and David on important cognitive exercises. x
  • 6
    Cognitive Restructuring and Thought Records
    The CBT thought record is the workhorse of the therapy, the tool that will lead to cognitive restructuring. Learn how to create your own thought record, identifying your triggers, emotions, and automatic thoughts. Watching David as he works through the first part of his own thought record will help you develop your own and better understand the power of the tool. x
  • 7
    Worry, Rumination, and Sticky Thoughts
    Have you ever found yourself worrying so much that you wished you could just turn your brain off? You're not alone-it's normal to worry from time to time. But when worrying becomes unproductive and continual, CBT tools can help you regain control. Learn several techniques-from distracting yourself to scheduling official worry time-that can help you redirect your thoughts and avoid rumination. x
  • 8
    Digging Deeper: Rules and Core Beliefs
    To benefit from CBT, it's not enough to look only at your automatic thoughts. Use a new worksheet to identify your deepest beliefs and schemas, as well as your signature strengths. Functioning as an advanced thought record, your detailed core beliefs worksheet will help you understand what drives your automatic thoughts about yourself. x
  • 9
    Toolbox in Action: Stress and Assertiveness
    In this lecture, you will continue exploring blended techniques, using both cognitive and behavioral strategies to practice assertiveness and stress management. The basics are already in your toolbox, but you'll learn to create the new tools of cognitive rehearsal, microaffirmations, and savoring by combining the basic skills in new ways. x
  • 10
    Understanding and Managing Emotions
    You have experienced emotions every day of your life, and they influence everything you think and do. And yet, they are not always easy to identify and understand, and certainly not easy to control. Discover how to identify your primary emotions, their triggers, associated cognitions, and linked behaviors. Watch David as he learns about the modal model of emotions and emotion regulation skills. x
  • 11
    Key Steps to Solving Problems
    Learn about problem-solving therapy and how it can help manage the negative effects of stressful events. As you develop the skills to identify the stressors that trigger your sadness and anger, you’ll be able to better manage negative emotions. You will become more confident about your ability to cope with difficult problems—and even more accepting of problems that might not have a solution at all. x
  • 12
    Grief, Sadness, and Depression
    Grief and loss unite us all; if you haven't experienced a loss yet, you will before long. Learn about the relationships between sadness, grief, and depression, and how CBT can help at all points along the depressive continuum. Watch Miriam as she begins to cope with the grief of having recently lost her mother. How can you determine whether or not she's clinically depressed? x
  • 13
    Panic Attacks and Anxiety
    Anxiety, one of the most common negative emotions, is something we’ve all experienced at one time or another. Look closely at the differences between anxiety, anxiety disorder, and panic attacks. Explore the treatment of exposure therapy and its success rates—the one aspect of CBT you should seek professional help to implement. x
  • 14
    Addiction and Pain Medications
    Learn how CBT can play a significant role in the treatment of substance abuse disorders—particularly when combined with medication assisted treatment—by addressing the underlying social disconnection that can lead to drug use. Watch Scott work with the issues of an opioid addiction that began with a legitimate need for pain relief from a physical problem. x
  • 15
    Embracing Imperfection
    The costs of being a perfectionist are high: anger, irritability, impatience, stress, rigidity—the gut-churning desperation to avoid failure and disapproval. Determine which CBT cognitive and behavioral techniques can be helpful in treatment, and watch Amanda as she addresses her own perfectionism. Discover the powerful Dutch concept of niksen and consider how it might fit into your own life. x
  • 16
    Beating Procrastination
    Explore the cognitions, behaviors, and emotions that come into play with procrastination. Learn to use your CBT thought record, core beliefs worksheet, and problem-solving therapy to identify ways in which you can reframe the task at hand. Watch how Amanda addresses her procrastination by employing the four squares" technique developed by US President Dwight Eisenhower." x
  • 17
    Soothing Rejection, Promoting Connection
    We are wired to be overly sensitive to rejection, and while that might have been adaptive in our evolutionary past, it is not helpful now. Watch how Stephen responds to perceived rejection. Learn about the nature of rejection itself and which CBT skills can help Stephen, Amanda, and others address those habits of mind that can work against us. x
  • 18
    Early Childhood Trauma and Neglect
    Learn about the ACEs study—Adverse Childhood Experiences—and why it has been so impactful in the medical and mental-health communities. You can identify your own ACEs number and associated risks. But more importantly, explore the many ways in which CBT can help you rewrite your own story and lower that risk as you watch Miriam address her own past trauma. x
  • 19
    Managing Chronic Disease
    Using the tools in your CBT toolbox, explore how chronic disease can affect self-image and a sense of hope, and how it also challenges notions held about mortality and vulnerability. While CBT cannot cure the physical illness, it can be used to ameliorate many of the habits of mind that affect daily life. Watch Miriam as she addresses the impacts of several chronic illnesses. x
  • 20
    Coping with Chronic Pain
    Learn which CBT tools can be used to manage the psychological suffering that usually accompanies chronic pain, something that affects 15 to 20% of Americans each year. While CBT is not meant as a substitute for other types of pain intervention, it can add to the treatment protocol as it targets emotion regulation and improved social and occupational functioning. x
  • 21
    How to End Insomnia and Finally Sleep
    Lack of sleep is one of the most common medical complaints seen in primary care clinics today. Explore the impressive efficacy of CBT-I (“I” for insomnia) and watch Christian as he addresses his seven-year battle with insomnia using CBT-I techniques. Learn about sleep hygiene, sleep efficiency, how to keep a sleep log, and how you might apply these aspects of CBT-I to your own life. x
  • 22
    CBT for the Beginning of the End of Life
    How can we use CBT to improve the quality of the last years of life, when death becomes either imminent or certain within the next few years? Explore the many CBT tools that can be used to work with end-of-life issues. Watch David as he addresses these issues with a very specific configuration of CBT tools in a 12-session format. x
  • 23
    Expanding CBT with Technology
    Technology can be a boon for CBT, expanding its accessibility to those who aren't able to work with a therapist in person and those who prefer technological assistance to the standby pen and paper. Explore the exciting possibilities of expanding CBT accessibility through chatbots, mobile apps, websites, video games, virtual reality, and the even newer technologies on the horizon. x
  • 24
    Reclaiming and Rewriting Our Stories
    What stories do you tell about yourself? Your loved ones? Explore how CBT and the search for cognitive balance can inform and reshape our stories in constructive ways. Explore the practice of writing your own character sketch and the "library exercise" in which you curate your own library of stories. What would you like to change now that you have the CBT tools to do just that? x

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What Does Each Format Include?

Video DVD
Instant Video Includes:
  • Ability to download 24 video lectures from your digital library
  • Downloadable PDF of the course guidebook
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Video DVD
DVD Includes:
  • 24 lectures on 4 DVDs
  • Printed course guidebook
  • Downloadable PDF of the course guidebook
  • FREE video streaming of the course from our website and mobile apps
  • Closed captioning available

What Does The Course Guidebook Include?

Video DVD
Course Guidebook Details:
  • Printed course guidebook
  • Photos & illustrations
  • Suggested readings
  • Questions to consider

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Your professor

Jason M. Satterfield

About Your Professor

Jason M. Satterfield, Ph.D.
University of California, San Francisco
Professor Jason M. Satterfield is Professor of Clinical Medicine, Director of Social and Behavioral Sciences, and Director of Behavioral Medicine in the Division of General Internal Medicine at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF). He earned his B.S. in Brain Sciences from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and his Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from the University of Pennsylvania. He currently directs the...
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Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Daily Life is rated 5.0 out of 5 by 3.
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Cognitive behavioral therapy for daily life I am extremely pleased with this course. I have Mind Body Science and have purchased 2 more courses by Jason Satterfield.
Date published: 2020-11-15
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