Behavioral Modification Therapy – Counselors in Columbia SC

Behavioral Modification and utilizing Behavioral therapy and related interventions vary from one clinician and with the disorder; however, they focus mostly on how some thoughts or behaviors may accidentally get “rewarded” within one’s environment, contributing to an increase in the frequency of these thoughts and behaviors. Behavior therapies can be applied to a wide range of psychological symptoms to adults, adolescents, and children. A couple of examples are below.

Scenario 1: Imagine an adolescent that persistently requests to use the their cell phone to communicate with friends. After repeated requests to parents, and repeated denials for permission, the teenager becomes angry, irritable, and disobedient towards his/her parents. Following a tantrum, the parents decide they cannot take the hassle anymore and allow their child to borrow the phone. By granting permission, the child actually has received a “reward” for throwing a tantrum. Behavior therapists say that by granting permission after to a tantrum, the child has “learned” that disobedient behavior is an effective strategy for getting permission. Behavior therapy seeks to understand such links between behaviors, rewards, and learning, and change negative patterns. In other words, in behavior therapy, parents and children can “un-learn” unhealthy behaviors, and instead reinforce positive behaviors.

Scenario 2: Imagine being afraid to swim. To avoid the fear and anxiety, you might eventually choose to avoid all water related recreations, and refuses to go on family vacations to the beach or pool. The extra time and energy that is needed to walk or step into the water could cause you to be constantly angry, hyper reactive, and irrational. However, despite these consequences, the fear that comes with water and swimming is too great to bear. Behavior therapists suggest that avoiding the water has been rewarded with the absence of anxiety and fear. Behavioral treatments would involve supervised and guided experience with water related activities until the “rewards” associated with avoidance have been “un-learned,” and the negative associations you have with pools and swimming has been “un-learned.”

Although behavioral therapies are different from disorder to disorder, a common thread is that behavioral therapists encourage clients to try new behaviors and not to allow negative “rewards” to dictate the ways in which they act.

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Thriveworks Counseling Columbia

Patrick is a STAR

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I was ready to give up hope of ever healing from PTSD when I found Thriveworks. Patrick’s approach using CPT...Read more

worked when traditional counseling by several other therapists had failed. I really was beginning to believe PTSD was just something I’d have to learn to live with, but Patrick taught me how to work through my issues using the worksheets on my own. As a military spouse, my time with Patrick had a deadline as my husband’s service time at Fort Jackson came to a close. Patrick ensured that I took with me the tools to continue working through my issues long after leaving his office. I can’t thank him enough for changing my inner voice, and giving me the power to stop negative thoughts and process them in a healthy way. Patrick changed my life and after struggling for all of my adult life, I finally have the confidence to live without shame and understand my value. He has a deep understanding of the unique struggles military couples face, and worked tirelessly with my husband and me. Thank you, and Patrick, for teaching me how to save myself and my marriage.

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I've been in and out of therapy and hospitals over the past couple of years. I have had bouts of depression a...Read more

nd a lot of trauma that I have had to work through. I also have a pattern of running away and getting mad when I'm challenged or things don't go my way, but this time I didn't run and haven't ran. Dr. Pena was very encouraging, down to earth, caring, and helpful which was a blessing. But warning to all, she is a busy lady and sometimes getting an apt can be tricky. But she will make time and do what she can to see you. My advice is get in and keep your apps, because there is a reason she is busy, but never too busy to return a text or come in when she didn't have to. Thank you because that little bit of care and time actually meant more to me than anyone can imagine.

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Patrick is great! He challenges you, but in a constructive manner. Scheduling with Thriveworks is amazing!

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  • 2805 Millwood Ave.
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