Full Text: “Stoicism as Cognitive-Behavioural Therapy (CBT)”

The Behavior Therapist

By D. Robertson and T. Codd, originally published in The Behavior Therapist, vol. 42, no. 2, Feb 2019

Abstract: Stoicism provides the clearest example of a system of psychotherapy in ancient Greek or Roman philosophy. Albert Ellis acknowledged that some of the central principles of Rational Emotive Behaviour Therapy were “originally discovered and stated” by the Stoics and Beck that “the philosophical origins of cognitive therapy can be traced back to the Stoic philosophers.” However, the emphasis on mindfulness and living in accord with values in Stoicism was largely ignored by them and unknown to the third-wave psychotherapists who followed them. This article highlights Stoicism’s similarities to modern mindfulness and acceptance-based CBT and its potential as an approach to building emotional resilience.

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