Revive Counseling LLC

Riding the Waves: Exploring Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT)

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Life throws us curveballs, and sometimes those curveballs come in the form of mixed anxiety and depression (MAD). Imagine simultaneously feeling overwhelmed by worry and sadness, struggling to navigate daily life with a constant undercurrent of tension and negative thoughts. If this sounds familiar, Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) might be your much-needed anchor in the storm.

What is DBT?

Imagine a therapy combining mindfulness, acceptance, and change strategies. That’s DBT in a nutshell. Developed for borderline personality disorder (BPD), Dialectical Behavioral Therapy has proven effective in treating various mental health concerns, including the complex and intertwined challenges of MAD.

How Can DBT Help with Mixed Anxiety and Depression?

For those experiencing MAD, the constant interplay between anxiety and depression can be debilitating. Dialectical Behavioral Thearpy provides a powerful framework for addressing both aspects simultaneously. Here’s how:

    • Mindfulness: Cultivating awareness of your thoughts, feelings, and bodily sensations without judgment allows you to observe your anxiety and depression without getting swept away by them.

    • Distress Tolerance: When anxiety and depression grip you, DBT teaches you healthy coping mechanisms like mindfulness exercises, relaxation techniques, and self-soothing strategies to weather the storm.

    • Interpersonal Effectiveness: Communication can be challenging when you’re struggling with MAD. DBT equips you with tools to communicate your needs assertively and build healthy relationships, even when emotions run high.

    • Emotional Regulation: DBT helps you identify and manage your emotions effectively, recognize triggers, understand the difference between thoughts and reality, and develop skills to regulate your emotional response.

    Think of your anxiety and depression as intertwined waves. Dialectical Behavioral Therapy doesn’t aim to eliminate them entirely; it teaches you to navigate them skillfully. You learn to:

      • Mindfully observe: Acknowledge the waves of anxiety and depression without judgment.

      • Manage the surges: Use distress tolerance skills to cope with overwhelming emotions effectively.

      • Break the cycle: Develop strategies to identify and challenge negative thought patterns that fuel both anxiety and depression.

      Is DBT Right for You?

      If you struggle with mixed anxiety and depression, DBT can be a valuable tool. Its skills-based approach empowers you to:

        • Reduce emotional intensity

        • Improve communication and relationships

        • Develop healthier coping mechanisms

        • Build resilience and self-compassion


          • DBT is a collaborative process between you and your therapist.

          • It takes commitment and practice to see results.

          • DBT can be your anchor, helping you ride the waves of mixed anxiety and depression with greater ease and find a path towards a more fulfilling life.

          Ready to explore DBT further? Talk to your therapist or mental health professional to see if it’s right for you. You’re not alone in navigating the challenges of MAD. Remember, DBT can be your anchor, helping you ride the waves with greater resilience and grace.


            • Consider adding specific examples of how DBT skills can address common symptoms of MAD, like worry, rumination, and low mood.

            • Briefly mention the evidence-based research supporting the effectiveness of DBT for MAD.

            • Include resources for further information on MAD and DBT, such as websites, hotlines, or support groups.

            I hope this information helps!