Friday, February 17, 2023

Ways to Heal - Cognitive Processing Therapy


We are continuing our series on ways to heal from PTSD. This week we are talking about Cognitive Processing Therapy (CPT).

CPT typically takes 12 sessions with a therapist; each session is 60 minutes. CPT can be done individually or in group sessions, and it uses a workbook for written assignments. Cognitive means that we pay attention to our thoughts and think about what we are thinking about. 

CPT recognizes that trauma warps our fundamental belief systems—beliefs about ourselves, others, and the world—and that those warped beliefs affect our walking, talking, everyday lives. In CPT, we learn about the relationship between thoughts and emotions and then learn how to identify the automatic thoughts that maintain our PTSD symptoms.

We write an “impact statement” that details our understanding of why the traumatic event occurred and what impact it has had on our belief systems. Next, we’ll use workbook exercises to identify and address unhelpful thinking patterns related to safety, trust, power and control, esteem, and intimacy. Our therapist will ask questions and work with us to recognize unhelpful thinking patterns, reframe our thoughts, reduce our symptoms, and come to a better understanding about ourselves and our relationships. 

CPT forces us to get out of "auto-pilot" and start challenging our thought patterns. Often these are thoughts we have held on to for a long time. 

You can learn more at and reach out on the Facebook page to ask questions and share your thoughts!


If you believe change is possible, you want to change, and you are willing to do the work, you absolutely CAN get your life back.”

Get your copy of The Soldier's Guide to PTSDThe Soldier's Workbook

or Acknowledge & Heal, A Women's-Focused Guide to PTSD

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