Topic 7: Core Beliefs {by 10/25}

Watch MDD-16: Core Beliefs – Evaluating [“Identifying 2” in text] – Core Belief Flowchart-Part A.  Answer the following: (1) In what way was the CBF-A effective in understanding how the clients’ core belief developed? (2) What additional historical information could have been obtained to understand the development of the client’s core belief?  *Please remember to click the “reply” button when posting a reply.  This makes it easier for the reader to follow the blog postings.

32 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Becca Green
    Oct 21, 2018 @ 19:36:11

    The questions used in the CBF-A were focused on the types of events that stuck out to Mark in relation to the already identified core belief of unlikable (or unlovable). The core belief being identified before using this was important for obvious reasons as the questions were directed at the specific type of core belief. This is helpful in uncovering specific interactions, situations, or trauma that specific relate to this core belief. I think this is helpful for a couple of different reasons, one being that it gives an understanding of the types of events that occurred and how they reflect to the current moment. The other helpful thing is that the questions can point out things in the past that may need to be focused on in order to help the person move forward from the event and then be able to modify that core belief. This also helps the client think about their past events that may have impacted them in long-term ways that they may not have originally linked together, which can also help assist the client in growing a better understand of themself. Mark specifically seemed to have a somewhat easy time time thinking of the events that may have been a part of him feeling as though he is unlikable. The questions within the CBF-A definitely made it easier for Mark to think about the friends or family that may have impacted his view of himself, but when prompted he was able to think of people and situations that did impact his core belief of unlikable.

    The questions about family and friends were asked during the CBF-A provided some background of the events in Mark’s past that may have led to the development of his core belief of unlikable. I think going into some of the details about the types of little things that have bothered Mark, as he mentioned, might be helpful in understanding how his behaviors have changed over time even if his core belief stayed the same. This could be helpful for the future if any thoughts or behaviors in reaction to situations are similar to any he has had in the past that may be maladaptive and relate to his negative core belief of unlikable. It seems like the questions in regards to coping and stress management were focused on the current situation, even though he did mention how he was able to cope when it college. Other than that I honestly cannot think of anything else that I would want to ask or know about Mark. I’m looking forward to reading what everyone else in class has in mind!


    • Deanna Tortora
      Oct 23, 2018 @ 20:39:19

      “This also helps the client think about their past events that may have impacted them in long-term ways that they may not have originally linked together, which can also help assist the client in growing a better understand of themself. ”
      I really like how you pointed this out. I agree. I really think that this flowchart shines in its ability to help clients gain some insight into how their past events and experiences affected them and how it helped them to develop certain ways of thinking and certain core beliefs. I really agree that simply going over this flowchart with a client can be helpful into helping them see some connections between their experiences and the development of their core beliefs. It seems super obvious that going over a flowchart like this with a client will help them to make connections, but it is still a powerful tool that can aid a client to make those connections! This flowchart should not be underestimated!


    • Amanda Russo-Folco
      Oct 23, 2018 @ 21:22:31

      Becca, I agree with your observation about Mark and the questions that were being used for the flowchart. I liked how you said, “The other helpful thing is that the questions can point out things in the past that may need to be focused on in order to help the person move forward from the event and then be able to modify that core belief.” I find this super important because in order to understand how his core belief developed, it is important to look at past experiences and how it all started. It is also important that Mark could recall these experiences from the past and how it relates to situations he is experiencing now. I also like your additional thoughts about Mark because there are thoughts that I haven’t thought about.


  2. Alyce Almeida
    Oct 22, 2018 @ 15:59:45

    1. The Core belief flowchart Part A identified the old core belief that Mark felt of feeling unlovable. This flowchart to me was a chance to dig deeper around the existing core beliefs with the past’s influence in the sense that with this chart Mark was able to touch base on these feelings way before he even started therapy well into his high school years. Mark mentions feeling that way around his friendships and the constant feeling of not being unlikeable, and his struggles with his parents of not being good enough, just like how he has been discussing throughout his sessions with his friends now and work situation as well. I think the flowchart was helpful because it takes the individual back to when these similar feelings started, and also reflects on events throughout the individuals life. This helps gain more specifics on thoughts and interactions the individual’s experiences but also how the individual could now reflect on all these aspects in the present day. Dr. V mentioned in class how a lot of people think CBT doesn’t reflect on the past at all which is obviously not true, as this chart is a prime example on how CBT is doing so. Having Mark use this chart helped understand past feelings and thoughts to then examine now and determine what might still need some changes and ultimately modify such beliefs. Being able to do so opens up the door to more positive outcomes and understanding of self which could really help reassure and motivate clients while in session.

    2. I think the historical information that Mark could touch base on is his family dynamics. Whats his heritage, cultural influence? Family type and siblings? He briefly mentions the feeling of letting his parents down due to not being good enough, which wasn’t further explored with his family specifically. I would of like Mark to discuss his relationship with his parents, and really dive into where his unlovable feelings came from in this relationship. Is it the authority figure aspect that maybe helps influence these thoughts? We see these similar feelings come out for Mark when he discusses work specifically (not getting his work done, “management breathing down my neck,” etc.). Then he further describes how such thoughts and feelings effect his relationship with Melissa, so you see a domino effect around this core belief specifically. I guess my question is what exactly started these feelings with his parents, and did Mark have similar coping mechanisms (shutting down/isolating) when situations occurred with his parents? What was his outlet at that point in his life in comparison to now? I guess my overall focus was the family for Mark and how the family relates to him and his core beliefs as a whole.


    • Amanda Russo-Folco
      Oct 23, 2018 @ 21:27:57

      Alyce, looking over your post, there are a lot of good thoughts that you mentioned. Reading your answer about the additional information, I agree that family dynamics could be touched based upon. I feel that learning more about his family and how he was raised could give some information into how this core belief developed, rather than just talking about experiences that occurred later in his life. But, the core belief flow chart is very useful and I liked how you used the words dig a little deeper because without those questions being asked, I feel that the therapist would not have a full understanding of how this core belief of unlikeable relates to Mark.


    • Melissa Pope
      Oct 26, 2018 @ 08:51:15


      I completely agree with you and the effectivness of the CBF-A. It is a useful tool to help individuals reflect on the past, to figure out when exploring where, when and why these current feelings started and then to be able to link historical events together to understand their current state. Its insight seems to be deep with the questions asked but not overwhelming. I like how you applied what was watched on the video with Mark’s current situation.


    • Jayson Hidalgo
      Oct 26, 2018 @ 18:49:52

      I really liked how you mentioned focusing more on the parents of Mark. Mark has given information about his earliest experience with his core belief of unlovable with Dave. However, as you much mentioned, it is important to focus on the family because doing this, it can help maybe determine exactly how his core belief developed. I think its safe to assume that Mark’s unlovable core belief may not have started with Dave, but another experience in Mark’s past could have developed his core belief and his experience with Dave simply negatively reinforced his core belief of unlovable.


    • Mikala Korbey
      Oct 26, 2018 @ 19:36:04

      Alyce, I really liked how in the second question, you mentioned that it would be important to gain information about his heritage and cultural background. Gaining this kind of information would give us more details about how he grew up and potentially help us better understand potentially why he thinks the way he does. I think it is also crucial to know more about his siblings, which you did mention. I had really only considered the role of the parents, not potential siblings, so I am really glad you pointed that out in your post. But overall agree with the ending of your post in that I am most interested in his family and what it was like for him growing up and how that may have influenced his way of thinking and being.


    • Marissa Martufi
      Oct 27, 2018 @ 17:18:37

      Alyce, I like that you described the flowchart as a way to allow the client to dig deeper into their core beliefs, and how past events or experiences may have influenced these beliefs. It’s apparent in Mark’s case, that his past experiences certainly relate to his existing core beliefs. I also like that you mentioned how people often assume that CBT doesn’t have any focus or reflection on the past. We know this is not true, because without understanding the past, it is difficult to understand the present, particularly with regard to core beliefs. I agree with your ideas in your post, and that the use of the flowchart is extremely helpful in allowing the client to open up and reflect on the past while also determining the core beliefs and what modifications should be made.


  3. Mikala Korbey
    Oct 22, 2018 @ 19:38:50

    1) The Core Beliefs Flowchart Part A gives the opportunity to ask the client about significant past events in their life relating to the theme of their strongest core belief. In the example of Mark, it was the most significant things relating to him feeling “unlikeable”. It also opens the client’s eyes to discovering related past events that are specific in nature, as in what sticks out to them or any big events in their life. By focusing on past events, it allows them to think back to their past beliefs as well that they have had, and can gain potential insight as to wether or not they are similar to the beliefs they hold onto now. I find it helpful that the therapist fills it out as they go through it, so the client can visually see all of the information they have uncovered. Also, there is a space to focus on coping or behaviors related to their thoughts and feelings about the certain events, which gives them insight into potential maladaptive behaviors and how they can improve. I also like that there is a focus on the positives in addition to the negative things. I also liked that they addressed his hope and good qualities because it is important that the client doesn’t feel like they are all bad or maladaptive. There is also a space for current life stressors, which may help to gain information about what is causing them distress now, and allows a little focus on reciprocal interactions and the influences they can have on the client. Finally, they addressed what things or activities he enjoyed doing in the past and in his current life. This may allow the client to gain insight into how the client may have gained some of their beliefs based on previous interests.

    2) Some additional information that might have been helpful to know:
    -Did you learn anything about yourself because of your past events?
    -Did you have non-family members who may have influenced your way of thinking? (He had mentioned that his parents were really concerned with success and doing well in school, but I am curious to know if there are other influential people in his life)
    -How did those past activities/interests make you feel? Would you be interested in trying to pick some of them up now in some capacity?
    -I am also curious to know more about his relationship with his parents and how that shaped his current way of thinking/beliefs


    • Alyce Almeida
      Oct 23, 2018 @ 18:09:47

      “there is a space to focus on coping or behaviors related to their thoughts and feelings about the certain events, which gives them insight into potential maladaptive behaviors and how they can improve”

      I really like the point you’re making here by clients being able to use this CBF-A to find methods of coping, I totally missed that in my response. Not to mention you pointed out the clients themselves can discover their own negative thoughts and maladaptive behaviors. The CBF-A is quite useful in multiple ways, and I think them gaining insight of themselves on their own is a powerful experience for them. Great point


    • Jayson Hidalgo
      Oct 26, 2018 @ 19:00:28

      I liked how you mentioned the Core Belief Flowchart allows the client to consider their past experiences. Furthermore, it is a great thing you mentioned that the Core belief flowchart gives the client the opportunity to evaluate any significant people or events that are related to his or her core belief. The Core belief flowchart gives the client some insight on exactly what events or people may have had a significant contribution to their core belief. Furthermore, along with identifying these events or people, the client is allowed to visually see on written paper their thoughts and emotions towards them. It simply gives the client a well written overview of their core belief development


    • Marissa Martufi
      Oct 27, 2018 @ 16:56:03

      Mikala, I enjoyed reading your post. I like that you mentioned the CBF-A opens the client’s eyes to revealing past events that may be influential or impactful of their core beliefs. Past events and experiences are important to understanding core beliefs, and like you said, the use of the CBF-A allows the client to think back, and recall past thoughts and beliefs, and understand how these may contribute to present core beliefs.


  4. Jayson Hidalgo
    Oct 22, 2018 @ 21:03:56

    There are some clients who can sometimes comprehend material when simply being told about it. However, there are other clients that may have difficulties understanding a certain topic so allowing one to see the topic in written form can help him or her have an easier time to understand it. The Core Belief Flowchart pretty much allows Mark to get a better understanding of his core belief as he is able to see his core belief written down and to see his real life examples, his actions, and what emotions of his are associated with such a core belief. The core belief flowchart allows the therapist and the client to understand what sort of history led up to the development of Mark’s core belief of unlikeable. Mark mentioned about his friend Dave being too cool for him during high school and it seems like that was the first time Mark has ever felt unlikeable or simply not good enough for someone. It gives the therapist a time period of exactly how long Mark has kept this core belief for. It allows the therapist to understand Mark’s core belief development and it also allows Mark to realize and understand the development of his core belief as well. Consequently, the Core Belief Flowchart pretty much summarizes the development of Mark’s core belief. It allows Mark to see what sort of things are associated with his belief such as events and the sort of people that influenced how he thinks about things.

    I guess some additional information that could have been obtained is a little from Mark’s first experience with feeling unlikeable with his friend Dave. Mark mentioned that he first felt unlikeable with Dave in high school so I think it would be beneficial to explore how his core belief came to develop. For instance, maybe exploring a little more specifically on what sort of things Dave did to Mark that made Mark feel unlikeable. For example, asking Mark when exactly was the first time he felt like Dave did not want to continue to be his friend and then evaluate Mark’s thoughts about that. This is pretty much the root of his core belief as far as we know so if we explore a little more on the root, we can later examine how the core beliefs branched out to other parts of Mark’s life.


    • Alyce Almeida
      Oct 23, 2018 @ 18:15:07

      You took the main route of his relationship with Dave for your second answer and I completely agree. Mark’s unlovable feeling is a constant topic we’ve seen video after video, so tackling that would be greatly useful for his similar feelings now in the present. It makes you think if Dave was the defining influence around this core belief for his friendships afterwards or if this belief developed even before Dave.


    • Melissa Pope
      Oct 26, 2018 @ 08:54:46


      I also think that more detailed information on how his experience and relationship with Dave in Highschool played out would be beneficial. Its seems that Mark put a lot of weight on what happened in highschool, without looking back further. There may have been other events that happened before highschool that made this particular friendship so traumatizing. I would be interested to know for therapetuic reasons why he put so much weight on this particular relationship or if it is just the first “negative” encounter that he seems to remember.


    • Becca Green
      Oct 27, 2018 @ 13:01:01

      Hi Jayson! You make a really good point about learning styles. Just as every client will be at different stages of change and need different types of support, they will also have different learning styles. We need to consider this while going into any pyschoeducation portion of therapy. Good thinking!!


    • Nicole Plona
      Oct 27, 2018 @ 14:14:05

      Mark’s relationship with Dave also sparked my interest a lot when watching the video. He noted that it was the ending of this friendship which started to make him feel unlikeable. If I could learn more about this relationship and why it had so much of a pull of the way he viewed himself it might make it easier to reach the root of this specific core belief in Mark. I also want to know how his friendship with Dave was different from his others because this one friendship ending basically made Mark forget all the other friends he might have still had at this point in his life. No friendship with Dave meant he was unlikeable by everyone, which just seemed to be a bit of a jump to me unless other relationship were similar as well.


  5. Sam
    Oct 23, 2018 @ 13:56:02

    It is important to recognize that core beliefs can often stem from past experiences. In regards to Marks core belief of being “unlikeable”, the CBF-A is helpful in exploring the historical events that have led to this specific core belief. In this case, Mark is able to go over and answer questions about events in the past that have resulted in negative thoughts, emotions, and behaviors, and how these are reinforced in the present. Additionally, the flow chart provides specificity for identifying individuals and events, which can be useful for Mark or any client because it allows them to isolate a specific turning point in their life that resulted in these long-term core beliefs. This is important because it gives the client reason for their beliefs as opposed to them feeling: “well, I’ve been like this for as long as I can remember”. With this, it is also helpful in identifying how a person essentially views their own core beliefs—whether they view it toward themselves, others, or the world. For Mark, this helps him determine that in this case, it is essentially he alone, that views himself as unlovable, which could be helpful when considering evidence for his beliefs. Also, I find it specifically helpful, especially for Mark, that this flow chart discusses temperament and coping skills. This is because, Mark often explains that he becomes “distant” or “withdrawn” when negative core beliefs and thoughts are elicited. In identifying these maladaptive responses, Mark has a better chance of working through them and developing adaptive behaviors. To add to that, it is also important that mark was able to discuss the positive qualities he likes about himself and his accomplishments. This is extremely helpful in eliciting motivation in clients to modify certain negative core beliefs and thoughts because Mark, or any client views themselves as having potential, and that these negative beliefs do not necessarily have to define the rest of their life.

    To obtain additional information in regards to what fostered Marks core beliefs, additional questions may be asked. For instance, although questions in terms of specific events, and specific individuals had been covered, it could be useful to ask if anyone is his past ever supported him or inspired him. This could be useful because it could provide Mark with some rational as to why he has certain beliefs. If no one was ever there to tell him otherwise, the negative beliefs he began to form became valid from his point of view. Additionally, it could be helpful to ask Mark about what coping strategies he uses for day to day stressors. This is because Mark admits that when faced with difficult situations (that are likely to happen more than once throughout life) he often withdraws. Identifying whether or not he has the resources and knowledge for effective coping as opposed to simply withdrawing, could benefit him greatly when the environment becomes too demanding and he begins to experience difficult thoughts and emotions. Lastly, it could potentially be beneficial to ask Mark what personal accomplishments he is most proud of. This could help both Mark, or any client and therapist to better understand marks self-concept which could possibly explain any maladaptive response patters.


  6. Amanda Russo-Folco
    Oct 23, 2018 @ 19:15:24

    The way that the core belief flowchart is effective in understanding how the client’s core belief developed is that it helps to identify which category the core belief lies under and it helps to establish the core belief itself. This flowchart focuses on client-specific personal examples. Mark was able to see what his core beliefs are and were able to identify them. With the guidance of the therapist and asking questions, it helps the client identify and develop their core beliefs. Once the core belief is identified, then it can be evaluated and modified. It also brings about memories from past experiences that could lead to a better understanding of why Mark feels the way he does. His past can be used to bring about experiences and memories that could be related to what he is experiencing now. His core belief of unlikeable began when he was in adolescence and he realizes this and understands how this core belief has developed through a series of questions. It is interesting to see how past experiences bring about our core beliefs and this is when they are developed. We see that through Mark with his experiences in adolescence and also in college as well. Looking at the past through old memories, he saw that there was a common pattern of the core belief “unlikeable”. He also saw that there were similar patterns of thinking, feeling, and behaviors that stemmed from the same core belief of unlikeable. He kept telling the therapist examples of scenarios with his friends and roommate and this showed how this core belief developed.

    Additional historical information that could have been obtained to understand the development of the client’s core belief is that I wonder if Mark has had any close friends growing up, even before college. It seems like there is always a pattern of Mark having trouble maintaining friends because of the core belief that he has. In my opinion, the therapist asked all the correct questions about the client’s history to see how this core belief came about. For example, there were questions asked about significant individuals involved (his first college roommate) and life events that have been significant in Marks life. It is also important to find out about Marks coping skills and his temperament when he starts to feel unlikeable because this could lead to a lot of distress as well. It is important to have good and healthy coping skills that can help Mark, not make the situation worse. With Mark, his coping skills is to withdraw from the situation, and that is not a good coping skill to have. So, this is something that could be worked on. In general, it is important to focus on the core belief that elicits the strongest emotions and appear to be associated with multiple negative automatic thought patterns. In Mark’s case, the core belief that was focused on was unlikeable. I also would want to ask Mark about his family background as well and how he was raised and brought up.


    • Deanna Tortora
      Oct 23, 2018 @ 20:34:23

      “I wonder if Mark has had any close friends growing up, even before college. It seems like there is always a pattern of Mark having trouble maintaining friends because of the core belief that he has”
      I am wondering this as well! It seems Mark’s core belief of being unlikable really comes into play when he is turned down in some way. It’s obvious being unlikable is a social core belief, but for Mark it really seems to activate when someone turns him down in some manner. Or at least Mark perceives it as someone turning him down and not an activity or a job, and for their own personal reasons and not because they do not like him. I cant help but generate a few hypotheses that Mark experienced a few things in his past that really stuck out to him and helped to forge this unlovable core belief. I would like to know more of his friends and relationships at key points in his life because this could help to shed some light on the development of his core belief. And it could even be helpful to investigate this with Mark and make connections to his present day experiences.


    • Mikala Korbey
      Oct 26, 2018 @ 19:41:19

      Amanda, I really liked that in the second question, you gave more consideration to this friendships growing up and how that could have affected him. When I was watching this video and writing my post, I was so caught up in how his family had potentially affected him that I failed to consider how past friendships may have influenced him as well. It his highly possible that growing up he had poor friendships that negatively impacted how he views friendships and what he thinks that people think about him. I am really happy you mentioned this because it helped me gain a new angle to look at when considering Mark’s story.


  7. Deanna Tortora
    Oct 23, 2018 @ 20:25:27

    The core belief flowchart was effective in understanding how Mark’s core belief developed by reviewing historical events and contexts related to the development of his core beliefs. This flow chart helped Mark and his therapist work out the historical development of his core belief of being unlikable/unlovable. The flowchart was used to help Mark recognize events that helped make or develop his core belief, like with his experience with Dave. He felt Dave was too cool for him. The way this internalized and developed helped contribute to Mark’s unlovable core belief. Working through the chart with his therapist helped Mark a bit to see some events that impacted his core belief. A client may not understand the origin of their core beliefs and working through historical events can help a client to see where they come from, why they have them, and how past events can relate to current ones in terms of their core beliefs. By working through this flow chart, clients and Mark can not only see where their core beliefs come from but how others influenced them and their core beliefs. That is, past experiences influence how we perceive things, and ourselves, and bringing this to light can be very helpful to clients. Mark can see how others made him feel about himself, how this developed and even get some context into how his core belief is still relevant presently. Though Mark is not yet completely insightful, using techniques such as this flowchart, will help him to develop more insight into his core belief. Essentially helping a client walk through their history with their core belief can give them insight into their core beliefs and how they think about certain things in relation to their core beliefs. The core belief flowchart is effective in many ways that were previously mentioned, but one of its largest strengths is bringing to light the clients past and its impact on the development of their core belief, and simply illuminating those experiences for the client. Sometimes just being cognizant of past experiences and their impacts on us can help the client in the present to understand why they think and feel the way they do. I think this is especially the case for Mark.

    (2) The additional historical information that could have been obtained to understand the development of the client’s core belief is:

    -more on his experience with Dave and how the core belief developed from that situation
    -more on some of his friendships in younger years in general (from young adolescence to early adulthood)
    -more on his parents and their concern with success (what does Mark think about how that impacted him)
    -more on his family in general and perhaps any cultural or religious backgrounds
    -more on how his core beliefs impact his relationship with Melissa (attempting to illuminate the relationship between his core beliefs, his actions, and his relationships and consequential thoughts)
    -Also, I want to give Mark a bit more responsibility with an open question around the development of his core belief. Something like: “When you think about your core belief of being unlikable, are there any events in your past that really come to mind? When did you feel this core belief was especially true?”
    Basically, I want more information around possible sources that helped to develop his core belief along with context around those situations. I would also like to know what Mark did when he felt his core belief was true in the past, and how his coping relates to his coping of “shutting down” now. I want Mark to think more about how his core belief came to be, connecting it to current events, as well as thinking a bit about how he deals with his core belief and how it is affecting certain aspects of his life (e.g. Melissa, meal invitations to friends, turning lights off and shutting down in his office or isolating himself and eating delicious unhealthy food)


    • Shannon O'Brien
      Oct 25, 2018 @ 11:29:03

      Deanna, I like your thought on giving Mark a little more responsibility through open ended questions. I think the CBF-A helps with that a little bit, however there is definitely more to follow up on here with the therapists own questions. I also like your question of “when did this especially become true?” As Mark stated, he said he can recall one of the first times he initially thought “maybe this person doesn’t like me,” however, when did this thought become consuming and constant? Great follow up thoughts!


  8. Marissa Martufi
    Oct 23, 2018 @ 21:31:59

    The Core Belief Flowchart- Part A (CBF-A) was effective in understanding how the clients’ core beliefs developed. In completing this flowchart, I noticed that it was extremely helpful in engaging Mark into the session as well as encouraged him to express his thoughts and beliefs, and therefore, talking about his core beliefs and how these beliefs have affected his life. The questions that are introduced to Mark using the CBF-A appeared to be helpful and effective as it allowed him to talk about experiences or events that were impactful and related to his core beliefs, specifically being ‘unlikeable’ or ‘unloveable’. I can see why the CBF-A would be used as it allowed Mark to reflect on his past experiences and the way that these have impacted him or affected him today. I noticed that in his reflection, Mark would make comments indicating that these are some of the reasons he is in therapy today. I think the use CBF-A and the reflective element of the questions is helpful, particularly in Mark’s case. Mark was able to think about his past, such as his time in college, living with a roommate, compared to now, living with Melissa. He was able to connect the differences in his behaviors from then to now, and how his thoughts and behaviors have changed. It seemed like the core belief flowchart was effective in allowing mark to identify previous experiences that might have impacted or been an influence as to make him feel or hold this core belief of being ‘unlikeable’ or ‘unlovable’. I like that the CBF-A uses questions to generate conversation and self-reflection which helps the client to identify important or significant events and experiences that have contributed to his feelings of being unlikeable. It is important to gain this background or past information, in order to understand the client’s current core beliefs. I also think the CBF-A was effective as it was filled out during the session. I think this is helpful because as the client is discussing and answering these questions, responses are being documented, allowing for both the therapist and client to easily identify similar thoughts, feelings, and behaviors related to the client’s core belief, across time.

    Although the use of the CBF-A gave helpful insight to Mark’s past and how some of these events relate to the core belief, there are some additional historical information that could have been obtained to understand the development of the client’s core belief. I think that it might have been helpful to learn more about Mark’s childhood and adolescence, and his family dynamic. Mark had mentioned that he had feelings of letting his parents down, so learning more about his upbringing could be helpful to learning more about the background to this feeling or belief of not being good enough. Learning more about his family dynamic and upbringing might also be helpful to learn where his core belief of being unlikeable might have stemmed from, and if this is a belief he held from when he was younger too.


    • Shannon O'Brien
      Oct 25, 2018 @ 11:19:55

      Marissa, I also really like how the CBF-A includes questions to prompt the client! When discussing core beliefs, I think it would be difficult for clients to address all crucial points without a little guidance, as they had lived and breathed this belief for so long. I think it would be hard to challenge a belief like Mark’s without questions like the ones on the flow chart. The unbiased and opened questions give people an opportunity to identify and verbalize specific events or individuals who contributed to their distress/core belief.


    • Becca Green
      Oct 27, 2018 @ 13:16:38

      Hi Marissa! I think your points on filling out the CBF-A while in session can be valuable to the client and the therapist. Not only can you grow a better understanding of how the client views the development of their core belief, but there can be an open dialogue of the similarities of what the therapist is noticing and what the client is sharing. This may allow the client to reflect on the different life events and dig deeper into the events. It may also provide a forum for the client to ask questions and even start to remember other events that may have influenced the development of the core belief.


  9. Melissa Pope
    Oct 24, 2018 @ 19:16:49

    I think that the CBF-A is a good tool to understand and individuals past in a summary form. The point of CBT is to address current issues and to help individuals become more adaptive in current life. The CBF-A looks at the development of core beliefs without dwelling on the past too much. It allows a lense for the therapist to understand past events and influences and how they may have impacted the individual. I enjoy the specific questions of who in your life has had and influence on you, or events that impacted you. The way they are phrased are neutral so that the individual answering them can respond with either a positive or negative reaction.

    The additional information I would like to know are about the smaller details within specific events and how it impacted the person. Also how was general day to day family life. What was it like living in the home you grew up in, were you close to any other relatives? If the person had siblings or was an only child, how did you feel about that? Does the person feel that problems are worse or better now when comparing it to past issues.


    • Nicole Plona
      Oct 27, 2018 @ 14:05:51

      I really liked how your post was quick and to the point that you wanted to make. People like to focusing on how CBT doesn’t like to talk about a person’s past but the CBF-A is one of those ways that a CBT therapist can. That being said I agree with you when you mentioned this is being used to the focus on how to adapt and adjust behaviors and thoughts in the present without dwelling in the negatives of the past. It’s important to understand where ideas and core beliefs developed in and individual’s past so that they can move on in their present life.


  10. Shannon O'Brien
    Oct 25, 2018 @ 11:06:36

    The CBF-A is important in order to develop a visual timeline of past events and individuals that helped form a core belief. Before getting into the CBF-A specifically, I think one of Mark’s first comments regarding how he views the core belief was interesting. He states that he’s relatively confident in the fact that the core belief is only intrinsic and that others do not actually dislike him. That showed, to me at least his, progress from the first few sessions. Moving on to the CBF-A, Mark and the therapist begin by talking about events that occurred and people that were around during his first feelings of depression and how each made their contribution to this developed core belief of being unlikable. Mark goes into detail about past events how they made him feel “crummy” at that point in time, but also how talking about them now still makes him feel that way. I think this was a powerful moment for Mark as he was able to identify that “crummy” feeling while attaching it to a specific past event, while also viewing on paper how this relates to his current depression and core belief. What I also think is great about the CBF-A flowchart in general and for Mark, is that it provides and opportunity for him to see on paper, what/who may have initially triggered the belief, what/who has helped maintain or strengthen that belief, and finally, what the current impact level is of that belief and how it continues to contribute to his depression.

    I think Mark’s family history can further be explored in order to really modify and maintain a this core belief. He briefly talks about his parents getting divorced, however we aren’t sure exactly when this occurred, and he did say he doesn’t believe that it affected him. However it may be something to just keep in mind. Additionally, he states he felt pressured to be successful and to please his parents. I am definitely interested in the dynamics between him and his parents and how their relationship could have effected the development and strengthening of any core beliefs. I think more conversations regarding his friends from high school and college will be able to shed some light on where the unlikable core belief originated. Recounting those experiences with his friends really seemed to bring up strong feelings, therefore those events and relationships would be important for me to follow up on.


  11. Nicole Plona
    Oct 25, 2018 @ 16:00:34

    1)The CBF- A is effective because it can help open a client’s view point to different types of negative core beliefs that they have all while creating new conversations around different and potentially traumatic events that have happened in their life. When looking at Mark as the client during the video, all of his negative automatic thoughts surrounded the idea that he wasn’t good enough for others to want to hang out with or that he was generally an unlikable guy. Going through the CBT-A also allows a client to realize which of these different events or situations that occurred in their life played more into the development of their core beliefs. When working with the CBF-A, it can be extremely beneficial for the client to see everything filled out and learn the connections between events and their beliefs. It is important to bring up that this process is beneficial for both negative and positive factors surrounding all the information being brought up. This allows the client to make positive connections and realizations surrounding how they view themselves or the world around them. This process ultimately ends in them focusing in on and helping the individual seeing what types of activities and tasks they actually enjoy doing and make them feel better about themselves.

    2)Looking to the additional information, I would want to know if there were any events earlier on in his life that made him feel as if he wasn’t liked by people. I know that it was mentioned by Mark that he felt as he didn’t fit in and was un-liked in high school. However, I would want more details on what went wrong during specific events in high school. If there was a pattern that occurred between each event it could be beneficial when moving on to more recent interactions like with his coworkers. These earlier events seem to be where the automatic thoughts leading to the negative core beliefs started to first develop. I know Dave played a huge role in this development when the friendship started to break-up. If there were other encounters similar to this one it would make sense that the core belief really started to develop here. And that’s where the conversation on how to break down these thoughts would start.


  12. Jayson Hidalgo
    Oct 26, 2018 @ 18:58:59

    I liked how you mentioned the Core Belief Flowchart allows the client to consider their past experiences. Furthermore, it is a great thing you mentioned that the Core belief flowchart gives the client the opportunity to evaluate any significant people or events that are related to his or her core belief. The Core belief flowchart gives the client some insight on exactly what events or people may have had a significant contribution to their core belief. Furthermore, along with identifying these events or people, the client is allowed to visually see on written paper their thoughts and emotions towards them. It simply gives the client a well written overview of their core belief development.


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Adam M. Volungis, PhD, LMHC

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