What is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy?

Hallie Condit, MSW, LICSW

(425) 462-2799

Kirkland, Washington


We provide cognitive behavioral therapy for anxiety, panic, OCD, hair pulling, and skin picking problems. Cognitive behavioral therapy helps the client in identifying distorted thinking, and provides guidance on how to change this thinking.

We also focus on learning specific behaviors that can help the person with these problems. We help the client learn effective self-help skills that are used in homework assignments that change the way you think, feel and behave. Therapy is action-oriented, practical, rational, and helps the patient gain independence and effectiveness in dealing with real-life issues.

Many people wonder what to expect when they begin cognitive behavioral therapy. After the initial assessment, we will work together to determine what areas need work, and what your "symptom level" is prior to treatment. In this way, you can also assess whether you are making progress.

Plan of Treatment

We will work together to set up a problem list or goals that you want to work on. These problems might include procrastination, self-esteem, sadness, inactivity, anxiety, relationship conflicts, or other things you think you need help with. Over the course of treatment, we can devise plans and techniques to address these problems.


It works best to come to each session with one or two issues that you want to address for that meeting. In addition to your topics, we will review your feelings about the last session, any self-help you used, and your plans for the coming week, including additional self-help.

What are therapy sessions like?

The therapy session usually lasts 50 minutes. We will set an agenda for each meeting. The agenda might include a review of your experience in the previous session, your homework, one or two current problems, a review of what you've accomplished in this session, and homework for the next session. The goal is to solve problems.

Is There Homework Between Sessions?

A great deal of research shows that clients who actively do self-help homework are more likely to improve and maintain their improvement. We will develop techniques and interventions that you can practice outside of therapy sessions to help you feel more effective in handling your emotions, negative thoughts, relationships and behavioral problems. Self-help builds a sense of self-effectiveness.

What you learn in therapy is what you practice outside of therapy. Research demonstrates that patients who carry out homework assignments get better faster and stay better longer.

Our self-help homework might include keeping track of your moods, thoughts and behaviors, relaxation and breathing exercises, developing goals, challenging your negative thoughts, collecting information, changing the way you communicate with others, and other assignments.

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