Know Your Therapy: Rational Emotive Behavioral Therapy

Table of Contents

REBT is a therapy in which the patients learn to recognise, confront, and swap out self-defeating beliefs with constructive ones that support emotional well-being and goal attainment. REBT is used to help people deal with hardship, overcome it, and accomplish their goals. In REBT, patients and doctors collaborate to address negative attitudes, feelings, and behaviours that might affect a person’s happiness and general mood. These include anger, guilt, melancholy, anxiety, and more.

Following the identification of these attitudes and actions, arguing is a strategy used in REBT to assist patients in reformulating their ideas into something more reasonable and beneficial. Overall, this therapy can aid function restoration and improve efficacy in social and occupational settings. Additionally, it can also assist in problems like substance addiction disorders.

Table of Contents

Significance Of REBT

Numerous possible uses exist for REBT. Due to its emphasis on knowledge and action-taking, it might be helpful in a range of circumstances and mental health disorders. It might even result in long-lasting transformation in persons who receive this kind of therapy.

At Work Or In School, Burnout

Researchers have investigated the effect REBT has on academic and professional performance. This method helped undergraduate students who were experiencing burnout even months after therapy ended. For nurses, similar findings from a study were obtained. Group REBT increased participants’ job satisfaction and dedication to their organisation while reducing stress and burnout connected to their jobs.

Anxiety and Depression

For those suffering from anxiety or depression, REBT helps to reduce its effects. Even after the therapy is over, the outstanding benefits still seem to remain present.

For teenagers who are depressed, REBT has also demonstrated positive outcomes. This could be a result of its focus on instructional methods like:

  1. Recognising mental mistakes
  2. Fighting against erroneous beliefs
  3. distancing people from their behaviours
  4. Developing acceptance

An Example

“Miss C” is a college senior graduating and working for a bachelor’s degree in accounting. She comes from a middle-class household. She exudes excessive nervousness and agitation. Because she will soon be interviewing with an accounting firm where she wants to work, Miss C has decided to get career advice. She confesses that she hates interviews and is quite shy with new people. She wants to leave an excellent impression to land the job successfully. Because she feels her parents have high expectations for her, Miss C wants a career for herself and to satisfy them. Miss C is concerned that she would damage her prospects of landing a job with any company, not only this one but also with other businesses and employers.


Miss C may benefit from REBT since she knows some of her apprehensive sensations and underlying illogical beliefs around the interviewing scenario. The stages to assist Miss C in overcoming her anxiety are simple to picture when using the REBT ABCs.

  • “A” – Determine the Activating Event Please help Miss C describe the scenario that worries her (the interview with the accounting firm).
  • “B’s & IB’s” – Recognize the Irrational Beliefs and “Musts,” which are often expressed as demands, poor self-esteem, low tolerance for frustration, and/or awfulizing the circumstance. Miss C has the impression that she must excel in everything she does to get the position at the desired company—otherwise, she won’t have any jobs. She believes it will be dreadful if she is not hired for this position.
  • Identify the “C” – Consequences of holding the IBs. Declare Miss C’s unhealthy negative feelings (such as worry and humiliation) and self-destructive actions (avoiding the interview).
  • “D” – Question the IBs to see whether they are sensible and beneficial or illogical and counterproductive. Help Miss C understand that even if she doesn’t get the job, she will still have interviews with other firms so that it won’t be horrible. She should be pleased with herself for what she has already accomplished.
  • B’s & RB’s” – Identify new rational beliefs based on realistic assessments, high frustration tolerance, and non-demands. She would want to get this job, but if not, she will go on to other interviews. Although it would be disappointing if she didn’t leave a good impression, there will be future opportunities.
  • Adopt a New Effect, “E,” in number six. Help Miss C experience fresh, positive feelings and ideas regarding the interview, such as worry rather than fear, and irritation and disappointment if she does poorly rather than catastrophic, long-term repercussions.

Treatment Process

Miss C would get homework assignments to practice the new way of thinking as the counsellor worked with her to teach her the steps outlined above. Since REBT employs a multimodal, hands-on methodology, the counsellor would also instruct Miss C on stress-reduction techniques she might use before, during, and after the interview. To see herself conquering her nervousness during interviews, Miss C might also employ rational emotive imagery. Finally, role-playing the interview and utilising bibliotherapy to learn more about the interviewing circumstance are beneficial techniques that would aid Miss C in mentally preparing for the actual interview.

REBT is a method that might be used to assist graduating college students get over their interview phobias and concerns. While helping the students overcome their interview phobias, REBT may also assist them in doing the same for their erroneous self-perceptions and any worries or anxieties they may have in other aspects of their life. The good news is that you are primarily responsible for your severe, unhealthy stress, and the even better information is that you can eliminate or reduce it.

Issues Affecting Sports

As a form of therapy for athletes with mental health difficulties, REBT is quickly gaining acceptance. Teaching them how to alter their perspective and control their emotions can be utilized to recover and preserve the mental health of athletes. Although REBT in sports psychology aims to improve athletes’ mental health, the therapy frequently enhances athletic performance.

Goals Of REBT

The use of rational emotive behaviour therapy has several evident purposes. Restructuring these patients’ illogical attitudes and beliefs is meant to help them adopt a more optimistic viewpoint.

The sentiments or actions a person may experience during treatment will alter as REBT therapists strive to remodel thinking.

Some data including support REBT’s effectiveness in several diseases

  • Discomfort and worry or Anxiety.
  • Depression
  • Children’s disruptive conduct
  • Disorder of compulsive behaviour (OCD)
  • Disordered social anxiety
  • signs of psychosis

In sports psychology, it may be used to assist players in overcoming irrational beliefs that might adversely affect their mental health and performance; REBT has also shown potential.


REBT is based on the idea that we frequently ignore our deeply ingrained irrational beliefs and how they influence us daily. They are referred to as the ABCDEs:

  • Adversity or an Activating Event (A)

Something that causes you to acquire an illogical belief is an activating event or adversity, such as getting rejected for the job. Because the confusing idea is created to assist you in coping with the incident, it is the initial stage in the development of irrational thinking.

  • Irrational Belief (B).

The irrational belief created in reaction to the activating event is represented by the letter “B.” You may think, “I’m a loser, I’m useless, and I couldn’t perform the job anyhow”, as a coping mechanism. Even though this is undoubtedly a very painful concept, not knowing why you weren’t hired might still be more disconcerting. Surprisingly, irrational ideas are simple to form.

  • Consequences of Emotional and behavioural (C):

The effects of this illogical belief make up the third element. Consequences of irrational ideas almost often include both behavioural and emotional aspects. As a result, you can lose confidence or experience frequent melancholy (emotions) and stop looking for employment (behavioural).

  • Disputes (D):

You could realise that your absurd idea is harming you at some time. You start to argue against your illogical notion as soon as you feel your self-confidence eroding and have negative thoughts about yourself. If you’re seeing a therapist, they could offer advice on how to challenge the notion and come up with proof to the contrary, such as “I have a fantastic husband. I must not be a loser since my husband wouldn’t be with one.”

  • New Effect (E):

You will start to observe new implications or impacts after effectively challenging the erroneous notion. In our example, these consequences can include greater self-assurance, submitting more employment applications, and feeling good about your skills. These are the benefits of thinking more logically, such as “Maybe I wasn’t a good fit for that job, but I’ll find another” or “Maybe the hiring manager genuinely didn’t like me, but that’s her loss.”

The ABCDE model may be incredibly useful when charting the evolution of irrational belief and offering a high-level framework for how to confront and replace it.


Although cognitive behavioural theorists pioneered both techniques, REBT differs from cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT). Both strategies presuppose that altering your thinking will change your feelings and behaviours and cognitive distortions or flawed thought processes cause that discomfort.

The therapist is actively involved and oversees the sessions in both REBT and CBT, assisting the client by providing information.

The two treatments’ primary areas of concern and the therapists’ methods have significant differences:

  • The goal of CBT is to alter the person’s present behaviour. It focuses on bad habits and entails cooperation between the therapist and the patient.
  • The goal of REBT is to alter the person’s illogical thinking. It tries to assist customers in adopting a more optimistic mindset. The therapist challenges the client [1] to encourage change during treatment sessions.

Linking REBT and Positive Psychology

They have many of the same objectives and areas of interest. Naturally, there are certain places where the two approaches diverge, such as REBT’s strong emphasis on logic and the importance that many positive psychologists attach to feelings or intuition. Overall, they mesh rather well.

It turns out that positive psychology and rational-emotive behaviour therapy have a lot in common:

  • Both emphasise eliminating or confronting the bad.
  • Both lay a strong emphasis on not just getting rid of the bad but also on getting rid of the bad and replacing it with good.
  • Both approaches focus on helping individuals discover better possibilities for themselves and make the right decisions since they assume that people are intelligent and capable.
  • Instead of concentrating just on what people believe, they both understand the critical relevance of how they think.
  • Helping individuals lead better, more purposeful lives is the ultimate objective of REBT and positive psychology.

Most crucially, although having theoretical arguments and differences, they do not conflict with one another. Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy clients and practitioners will likely find much support and inspiration in positive psychology, and many positive psychologists value therapies like REBT and CBT.

Finding a therapy that incorporates elements of both positive psychology and Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy would not be inconsistent.

Since they aim to improve lives by strengthening good emotions, happy thoughts and positive actions, any theoretical or philosophical distinctions between Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy and positive psychology are ultimately irrelevant.

What Are The Techniques Used In REBT Therapy?

REBT employs three primary methods:

  • problem-solving
  • mental reorganisation.
  • coping
  • Creating efficient problem-solving strategies may address the “A” in the ABCDE model.

You do the following actions when you approach problem-solving logically:

  • Determine the issue.
  • Consider other approaches.
  • Make choices.
  • Put a fix into action.
  • Verify the viability of your proposed solution.
  • Mental reorganisation:

You may modify your erroneous thoughts and habits by recognising them through cognitive restructuring.

Then, when a specific incident results in harmful actions and ideas, your mind is educated to suppress the irrational thoughts and switch to more sensible ones. We may alter our views and beliefs to prevent sadness and anxiety from developing.

  • Coping:

Life is full of difficulties, and how we respond to those difficulties is how we deal.

For instance, you may take immediate action to adjust your situation if you feel burned out at work by, among other things, attempting relaxation techniques or listening to music.

 Why Infiheal?

Infiheal is where you can find professional psychologists. The therapist will probably talk about your goals and the events that activated your decision to seek treatment during your initial appointment. They might want to start using REBT techniques immediately; since this therapy is so active and intense, the therapist is unlikely to spend much time engaging in small talk with you.

You will probably be given homework to complete and new habits to try out during your treatment. How effective REBT is for you will depend on your willingness to experiment with new ideas and novel behaviours.


Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy is a powerful technique for assisting individuals in challenging their dysfunctional views, enticing them to approach problem-solving with reason, and replacing their unfavourable beliefs with new, uplifting, and life-enhancing assumptions. Regarding mental health, REBT adopts a more philosophical stance by attempting to transform unhelpful attitudes and thoughts into constructive ones.

The philosophy tells us that while it’s OK to ask for other people’s opinions, it’s crucial never to lose sight of what’s best for you. REBT encourages you to be more self-directed in life and resist following what the world or other people tell you to believe or feel.

You may strengthen your sense of self-worth and approach life’s obstacles with a clearer head and healthier mentality with treatment and consistent practice. This adjustment makes life happy.



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