Compassion-Focused Therapy (CFT)
The aim of compassion-focused therapy is to promote emotional wellbeing by teaching you to become more compassionate towards yourself and others. CFT draws on our current understanding of the emotion regulation systems: the threat and self-protection system, the drive and excitement system, and the contentment and social safety system. CFT’s theory states that these systems developed early on in our evolutionary history to help us provide more effective social support for each other within a tribe. These systems are still within us today, but have not necessarily adapted well to our modern world and circumstances. CFT’s effectiveness stems from its ability to bring these systems into balance.
CFT primarily focuses on helping people develop a compassionate mind. The treatment itself shares some similarities with mindfulness-based cognitive therapy. It progresses through a variety of interventions, such as mindfulness, appreciation exercises, and imagery exercises. CFT targets distressing thoughts and behaviors and is especially effective at helping address feelings of self-loathing as well as self-attacking patterns.