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What Is Compassion Focused Therapy (CFT)?

Compassion focused therapy (CFT) was developed to work with issues of shame and self-criticism. The CFT model complements and expands the traditional cognitive behavioral approach to human thought, emotion, and behavior. This information handout describes some key principles of the compassionate mind approach.

Compassion Focused Therapy (CFT) is a relatively new psychotherapy approach which was originally developed to work with shame and self-loathing (self-criticism). CFT is embedded within contemporary neurobiological understandings of the human mind. What Is CFT? is an information sheet describing the key principles of compassion focused therapy (CFT).

Compassionate Mind Training (CMT) is the skills-training application of CFT. For more information about compassion focused therapy visit the Compassionate Mind Foundation.

This is a Psychology Tools information handout. Suggested uses include:

  • Client handout – use as a psychoeducation resource
  • Discussion point – use to provoke a discussion and explore client beliefs
  • Therapist learning tool – improve your familiarity with a psychological construct
  • Teaching resource – use as a learning tool during training
  • Gilbert, P. (2010). The compassionate mind: A new approach to life’s challenges. New Harbinger Publications.
  • Gilbert, P. (2009). Introducing compassion-focused therapy. Advances in Psychiatric Treatment, 15(3), 199-208.

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