Cognitive Behavioral Therapy: 7 Steps to Freedom By Lawerence Wallace

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is an introduction to the central premise of cognitive behavior therapy (one of the most widely used approached by mental health care practitioners today) to help those in a therapy program or who are looking for a way to address some of their issues using this approach.  It is written in an easy to understand manner and gives a step by step process on how to select a problem to work on and how to improve upon the problem in question.  The book is written in a seven step approach to addressing problems dealing with anxiety and depression in particular.  Also included in this work are several worksheets to assist in working through the steps that are given in the book.

The approach of cognitive behavioral therapy is very clearly explained in this book and was perhaps one of the best and easiest to understand volumes I have read about this therapy approach and how it works.  The steps it gives are overall easy to follow and clear, becoming a little harder to follow on your own, at least to me, starting at step four when I personally feel a therapist would be more qualified to assist a person than the book.  The author discussed something new to me and that is the use of religion in cognitive behavioral therapy which was interesting to read about.  I also enjoyed reading about different ways to enhance mood that the author discussed in one of the last steps of the process.  There were a lot of ways discussed in regards to troubleshooting the ability to successfully handle a problem using CBT and to improve mood in general.

Although it didn’t distract from the message overall, this book could stand a good editing.  There were a lot of places were a word or two were missing that made the understanding hard to get at first.  I also felt a little bogged down in steps four and six and had to look at what the step was to understand why the research for the chapter was there and how it could be used to solve the problem that was generated in the first chapter.  The worksheets were also a little rough and could be a little better developed.

Overall this book was very clear and self explanatory with regards to how to deal with a problem using the CBT approach.  The information provided is supported with articles in professional journals and very current.  This would be a very helpful book for anyone trying to understand CBT, for a patient in a therapy program, or for someone who is looking for a self help book to deal with a problem. The worksheets are really helpful to guide the reader through the steps provided in the book even if they are a little rough looking.  The suggestions and research provided are creative and interesting and will be helpful for the reader trying to improve an area of their life.

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