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About Cognitive Therapy

Wendy Behary founded the Cognitive Therapy Center of New Jersey in 1991. Originally located in Summit, New Jersey, the Center moved its main office to Springfield, New Jersey in 1998. The Center and its affiliates offer services throughout New Jersey and New York City, and in parts of Connecticut, Long Island, and Pennsylvania.

The Cognitive Therapy Center offers consultation, education, and psychotherapy services to individuals, couples, families, groups, and businesses. Highly experienced therapists offer cognitive-behavioral and/or schema therapy for a number of difficult and challenging issues.

Affiliates in psychiatry offer medication evaluations and management when needed.
Our areas of expertise include:

  • relationship/marital distress
  • parenting
  • job stress
  • grieving
  • trauma
  • anger management
  • anxiety/depression
  • PTSD
  • Betrayal trauma
  • social avoidance
  • family crises
  • interpersonal skills/public speaking
  • coaching
  • eating disorders
  • substance abuse
  • personality disorders
  • issues of Narcissism

What is Cognitive Therapy?

Cognitive therapy views emotional problems as being influenced by negative or extreme thought patterns. These patterns become so habitual that they are experienced as automatic and can go unnoticed by the individual.

In therapy, the client is taught how to uncover these negative patterns and replace them with more adaptive ways of viewing life events. Through this process, clients learn self-help techniques that can produce rapid symptom shifts, solve current life problems, and improve self-esteem.

Cognitive therapy also addresses self-defeating behavior patterns, such as problems with assertiveness or intimacy.

How Cognitive Therapy is Different

The cognitive therapist actively directs clients to the discovery of central thinking problems.

The cognitive therapist engages clients as active participants by assigning therapeutic homework.

Cognitive therapy focuses on the resolution of current, specific problems.

The therapist makes joint decisions with the client and regularly asks for feedback to maintain a high degree of collaboration and empathy.

The Development of Cognitive Therapy

Cognitive Therapy was developed at the University of Pennsylvania, School of Medicine (in the 1970’s) by Aaron T. Beck, M.D., in response to his dissatisfaction with traditional approaches to psychotherapy.

Since that time, there has been an intensive investigation of this approach at academic centers around the world. Cognitive therapy (along with other variations of cognitive behavior therapy) is now probably the most widely researched and practiced of all modern psychotherapies.