Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT)

Experience Life at Olympia House

DBT groups at Olympia House can help you learn to tolerate the stresses of everyday living.

Regulating Emotions and Changing Patterns of Behavior

Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) is a form of cognitive therapy conceived by Dr. Marsha Linehan at the University of Washington in the late 1980s. DBT helps people develop open-mindedness and flexibility as a foundation for regulating emotions and changing patterns of behavior.

The word “dialectical” means that two ideas can be true at the same time.  Over the course of the group, we return to this concept as a way to let go of extreme thoughts and emotions and solve problems more effectively.

Our group references Linehan’s DBT Skills Training Manual, Second Edition (2015), since many of the techniques utilized in DBT come from the work and research of Dr. Linehan.

DBT Coping Skills

Dialectical-Behavioral-TherapyIf you suffer from addiction, you can learn DBT coping skills to reduce emotional suffering, improve problem-solving abilities, and build healthier relationships with others.  As emotions become more manageable, new behaviors can emerge that support sobriety and opportunities to live life more fully.

In our group, we focus on skills that help you to:

  • Accept yourself and your surroundings.
  • Tolerate distressing situations.
  • Reduce emotional suffering.
  • Relate to yourself and others in a healthier way.

DBT Techniques

DBT offers you tools to regulate high levels of negative emotions such as anxiety and depression.  It is also effective for people who struggle with addiction issues and are unable to handle feelings that can become triggers for drug and alcohol use.

DBT techniques that we provide include:

  • Mindfulness – Practicing ways to be in the present moment without judgment.
  • Distress tolerance – Addressing all-or-nothing thinking and beginning to accept things for what they are to reduce suffering and create a capacity to change emotions and behaviors.
  • Emotion regulation – Learning mind/body self-care techniques.
  • Relationship rebuilding – Developing healthy and productive relationship skills.