Cognitive Behavior Therapy is an empirically supported treatment for anxiety and mood related issues. It is an umbrella therapeutic modality under which many other treatments fall (e.g. Behavioral Activation, Comprehensive Behavioral Intervention for Tics, Dialectical Behavior Therapy, and Exposure / Response Prevention).
As the name suggest, Cognitive Behavior Therapy notes that moods carry both common thoughts and common behaviors which contribute to that mood state. Further, CBT notes that thoughts and behaviors influence one another. Therefore, by altering patterns of thinking or patterns of behavior, an individual has the capacity to change their mood. In therapy, this may involve understanding one’s bodily experience of emotions, how to identify and challenge unhelpful, negative thoughts and expectations, and how to engage in ultimately rewarding behaviors that feel scary or difficult. CBT is present focused and involves active participation and outside of session work.
Concerns of low mood or depression may also be addressed through the implementation of Behavioral Activation. Behavioral Activation is an evidence-based therapy that works to reverse patterns of avoidance that are common reactions to stress, negative life experiences, or predispositions to depression and instead facilitate an individual engaging in values-aligned, rewarding behaviors. Engagement in these goal-directed activities restores mood from the outside-in.