Therapists not trained in Dialectical Behavior Therapy are often unaware of the specific benefits a client can receive from DBT Skills Training. Dialectical Behavior Therapy as a modality is unique in its systematic approach to helping individuals with emotion regulation problems, particularly, but not exclusively, those individuals with Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD).
Dialectical Behavior Therapy views extreme thinking, behavior and emotions as the result of both motivation problems and capability deficits. DBT is unique because it includes both individual psychotherapy to address motivation issues (the motivation to stay alive and replace dysfunctional behaviors with more skillful ones) and skills training to develop competency in the skills necessary to make that happen in real life. It is this translation from motivation to action that is crucial to therapeutic success. DBT as a mechanism for such success has been rigorously researched in clinical settings.
While skills training can be offered individually, it is most powerful and effective in group settings. Either way, it is a necessary component of treatment for individuals with Borderline Personality Disorder and other serious emotion regulation difficulties. Clients attend weekly skills training groups for up to a year or more, while remaining in individual psychotherapy. Skills training includes a system of diary records, homework, and group accountability, and is led by a therapist specifically trained to teach DBT skills.
There are several ways we work with clients at The PRISM Center: