DBT orientation
Emotional Regulation
DBT Miscellaneous

What does DBT Stand for?

Dialectical Behavioral Therapy 


What is wise Mind? Describe each part. 

Emotion Mind- Ruled by feelings and urges

Rational Mind- Facts only. No opinions. 

Wise Mind: A synthesis of both emotion mind and rational mind that allows the person to make decision that won't make the situation worse. 


Name at least 3 pleasant activities. 

Swimming, painting, etc. 


What is opposite action? 

•The skills of opposite action consists of acting opposite to an emotion’s action urge.

•In the model of emotions, changing one component can change the emotion.

•In opposite action, we are talking about changing behavior.

•For fear, opposite action to fear would be to approach rather than to avoid.

•This is not easy, and once is not enough. It takes repeated effort, but it can work.

•One of the most consistent research findings is that if you repeatedly face what you fear (e.g., dogs, airplanes, spiders) and nothing bad happens, your fear will go down.

•Another amazing research finding is that if you are depressed, you can make yourself less depressed by becoming active (resuming exercise, going out to socialize when you are not in the mood).

•You can change your emotion by acting opposite to what you feel.


What is the recommended amount of time per day for practicing mindfulness to get the maximum benefit? 

At least 5 minutes 


What are Dialectics? 

Two opposing views that can be true at the  same time and when considered together create a new way of looking at a situation. 


Give an example of a dialectic in your life. 

My example: I am a leader and I'm a follower. 


Describe accumulating positive experiences. Provide an example. 

In the Short Term:

Do pleasant things that are possible right now.

• Increase pleasant activities that lead to

positive emotions.

• Do one thing each day from the Pleasant

Activities List. Also consider the Parent-Teen

Shared Pleasant Activities List.

Be Mindful of Positive Experiences:

• Focus your attention on positive events while

they are happening.

• Refocus your attention when your mind

wanders to the negative.

• Participate fully in the experience

Be Unmindful of Worries:

• Don’t destroy positive experiences by

thinking about when they will end.

• Don’t think about whether you deserve this

positive experience.

• Don’t think about how much more might be

expected of you now.


When should you use Opposite action? 

•The emotion does not fit the facts of the actual situation.

•You feel terror when speaking in front of the class, but your classmates don’t actually pose a threat to you. Plus you (and everyone else) has to do a presentation to pass the class.

•Your emotion is too intense; it has lasted too long or acting on the emotion will not be effective (or is no longer effective), even if the emotion is justified.

•Your teacher wrongfully blames you for distracting the class; this makes you angry (with good reason) but acting on the urge to talk back to her will just make the situation worse.

•You cat died 4 months ago, and you still are moping around, withdrawn from your friend, turning down their invitations because you don’t feel like socializing. A mourning period is understandable, yet, at a certain point, it feels excessive and you believe it is time to try to change the emotion.


True or False. Going through the motions while engaged in the “Pleasant activity” is  enough!!



Model how to use the making amends or Missing links analysis strategies of DBT. 

Making Amends

u1. I know that my participation is a key part of how you will learn and grow

u2. I know that you rely on me to be here.

u3. I missed group because _____________.

u4. The next time I am going to miss group I will let someone know ahead of time/ set an alarm/make it a priority (whichever fits), _______________________________.

u5. I am sorry that I was not here to support you.

Missing Links 

uWho completed their diary cards this week?

uWho turned them in prior to group?

uWho practiced mindfulness and wise mind this week?

Did you know what was expected of you?

Were you willing to do it?

uWhat got in the way?

uWhat can you do right now to ensure you turn it in next week?


Describe Mindfulness "How" skills. 

Stay Focused- One thing at  a time 

Non-judgemental: Facts only 

Do what works: FOllow the rules of the environment that you're in and choose strategies that work for you in that environment. 


Describe Building Mastery. 

1.Plan to do at least one thing each day to feel competent and in control of your life.

2.Plan for success, not failure. Do something difficult but not possible.

3.Gradually increase difficulty over time. If the first task is too difficult, do something one rung down on the ladder.


•Which of the following examples is using the opposite action skill.

1.Go to party, say hello to the host, and then find a chair in the corner of the room and wait for people to introduce themselves to you.

2.GO to party, say hello to the host, find the food and drink, and sit down in the kitchen quietly to eat.

3.GO to party, say hello to the host, and then skillfully (with a smile and firm handshake) introduce yourself to people who look toward you as you’re walking by. If you are not abruptly interrupting their conversations, ask them their names and a follow up question.

3.GO to party, say hello to the host, and then skillfully (with a smile and firm handshake) introduce yourself to people who look toward you as you’re walking by. If you are not abruptly interrupting their conversations, ask them their names and a follow up question.


Define Validation. 

VALIDATION communicates to another person that his or her feelings, thoughts,

and actions make sense and are understandable to you in a particular situation.


Name at least two of the DBT treatment assumptions. 

1.Everyone in this group is doing the best he or she can.

2.Everyone in this group wants to improve.

3.Everyone in this group needs to do better, try harder, and be more motivated to change.

4.People may not have caused all their problems, and they must solve them anyway.

5.The lives of group members and their families are painful as they are currently being lived.

6.Group members must learn and practice new behaviors in all important situations.

7.There is no absolute truth.

8.Teens and their family members cannot fail in DBT.


Describe Mindfulness What Skills

Observe- Notice thoughts and feelings as they pass by. 

Describe- Put words to your experience and emotion. 

Participate- Throw yourself fully into an activity (Dancing, singing, drawing, etc.)


What is Cope ahead? 

•Cope ahead with potentially upsetting situations

•Visualize the situation in advance and decide which skills you will use.


Describe the Wave skill. 


• Observe your feeling.

• Step back and just notice it.

• Get unstuck.

• Experience it as a WAVE, coming and going.

• Don’t try to GET RID of it or PUSH it away.

• And don’t try to HOLD ON to it.


• Notice WHERE in your body you are feeling emotional sensations.

• Experience the SENSATIONS as fully as you can.


• You don’t need to ACT on the feeling.

• Remember times when you have felt differently.


• Radically accept it as part of you.

• Invite it home for dinner; name the emotion.

• Practice willingness to experience the emotion.


Define Invalidation.

INVALIDATION communicates (intentionally or not, through words or actions)

that another person’s feelings, thoughts, and actions in a particular situation

make no sense, are “manipulative,” or “stupid,” or an “overreaction,” or not

worthy of your time, interest, or respect.


Describe the Biosocial Theory. 

There is a biological vulnerability to emotions

1. high sensitivity

2. high reactivity

3. slow return to baseline


B. An inability to effectively regulate emotions.

An invalidating environment communicates that what you are feeling, thinking, or doing doesn’t

make sense or is considered inaccurate or an overreaction. Environments include parents, teachers,

peers, therapists, coaches, and others. Sometimes there is a “poor fit” (e.g., temperament) between

the person and the environment

Resulting in emotional dysregulation 


Give an example of a wise mind decision you've made. BE sure to include a description of all three parts of wise mind. 

Example: Flat tire before work yesterday 

Emotion mind: Angry

Rational Mind: Can't drive on a flat tire w/o damaging it further. 

Wise Mind: Ask Husband to take to shop and drive the truck. Pay for tow to shop. 


Name at least one goal of Emotional regulation skills. 

I. Understand the emotions that you experience.

• Identify (observe and describe/name) emotions.

• Know what emotions do for you (are your emotions working

for or against you in this moment?).

II. Reduce emotional vulnerability and stop unwanted emotions

from starting in the first place.

• Increase positive emotions.

• Decrease vulnerability to Emotion Mind.

III. Decrease the frequency of unwanted emotions.

IV. Decrease emotional suffering; stop or reduce unwanted

emotions once they start.

• Let go of painful emotions using mindfulness.

• Change emotions through opposite action.



What are the step you use to Cope ahead. Identify at least two to receive credit. 

1.Figure out the emotion you are feeling (use mindfulness, observe and describe skills)

2.What is the action urge that goes with that emotion?

3.Ask yourself: Does the emotion fit the situation?

4.If yes, ask: Will acting on the urge of the emotion be effective?

5.Ask yourself: Do I want to change the emotion?

6.If yes, figure out the opposite action.

7.Do the opposite action ALL THE WAY.

8.Continue doing the opposite action until the emotion goes down enough for you to notice.


What does ABC Please Stand for? 

Accumulating positive experiences

Build mastery

Cope ahead of time with emotional situations

Treat PhysicaL illness

Balance Eating

Avoid mood-altering drugs

Balance Sleep

Get Exercise


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