Download The Generalized Anxiety Disorder Workbook: A Comprehensive CBT Guide for Coping with Uncertainty, Worry, and Fear PDF

TitleThe Generalized Anxiety Disorder Workbook: A Comprehensive CBT Guide for Coping with Uncertainty, Worry, and Fear
File Size2.6 MB
Total Pages266
Table of Contents
Chapter 1
	Worry, Anxiety, and GAD
Chapter 2
	CBT for GAD
Chapter 3
	Is Worry Helpful?
Chapter 4
	Positive Beliefs About Worry: Examining the Evidence
Chapter 5
	Worry and the Threat of Uncertainty
Chapter 6
	Intolerance of Uncertainty in Action: Identifying Safety Behaviors
Chapter 7
	Tolerating Uncertainty: Testing Out Beliefs About Uncertainty
Chapter 8
	Moving Toward Embracing Uncertainty
Chapter 9
	Coping with Worries About Current Problems
Chapter 10
	Coping with Worries About Hypothetical Situations
Chapter 11
	Building on Gains: Managing Worries over Time
Chapter 12
	Bumps in the Road: Coping with Lapses and Relapses
Document Text Contents
Page 2

“If you have ever engaged in excessive worry, you will find value in The Generalized Anxiety
Disorder Workbook. This volume introduces the concepts of intolerance of uncertainty and the
search for safety as key aspects of the worry cycle to explain the core processes involved in
unwarranted worry. The real jewels of this book, however, are the very many concrete and
applicable tools that it provides to readers, to help them both understand their worry and to
correct their concerns, if necessary. This workbook is based on solid research as well as the
framework of cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), and is written in an accessible and practical
manner by two of the world’s leading authorities. I recommend it with no uncertainty.”

— Keith S. Dobson, PhD, professor of clinical psychology at the University of Calgary,
Canada; past president of the Academy of Cognitive Therapy; and past president of
the International Association for Cognitive Psychotherapy

“This is a fantastic workbook for several reasons: it is based on a treatment that has strong
scientific support from multiple trials; it is brilliantly written, and is highly practical. The
downloadable worksheets and exercises, clear examples, and obvious expertise of the authors
make this an invaluable resource for people suffering from excessive worry, as well as health

— Roz Shafran, PhD, clinical psychologist and professor of translational psychology
at the University College London Institute of Child Health

“The Generalized Anxiety Disorder Workbook provides a thorough, engaging, and accessible
guide for managing worry. The CBT- based approach is comprehensive, starts from basics, and
should have something of value for everyone who struggles with uncontrollable and distressing

— Graham C. L. Davey, PhD, professor of psychology at the University of Sussex,
United Kingdom

Page 133

The Generalized Anxiety Workbook


care of all the household duties like doing laundry, making beds, and washing the dishes
so you know they’re done correctly, or you might do everything yourself at work. However,
as is the case with most every safety behavior, not allowing anyone else to help with tasks
can become very time-consuming and stressful. Reducing or eliminating uncertainty can
easily start to feel like a full-time job in itself.

Doing Things for Others
In addition to refusing to delegate tasks, many people with GAD also try to do things

for others. If you have children, you might find that you hover over them while they’re
doing their homework, pack their sports gear before a game to make sure that they don’t
forget anything, and drive them everywhere so you don’t have to cope with the uncertainty
of whether they’ll arrive somewhere safely on their own. With other family members and
friends, you might volunteer to prepare all of the food for a family dinner or take care of
all household finances to ensure that everything is done correctly and on time.
Unfortunately, this type of overprotection often feels like nagging to others, particularly to

GAD Safety Behaviors: Avoidance Strategies
The approach behaviors just described involve entering into unpredictable, novel, or
ambiguous situations with strategies aimed at reducing the uncertainty within a given situ-
ation. In contrast, avoidance strategies involve eliminating uncertainty by steering clear of
these situations altogether, or at least delaying entering them as long as possible.

An obvious form of avoidance behavior is avoidance, pure and simple. Avoidance

allows you to bypass the uncertainty of an unpredictable, novel, or ambiguous situation by
simply not placing yourself in the situation. The forms this takes are endless. You might
cancel a meeting with your accountant because you don’t know whether you’ll have enough
money to pay your taxes. If you’re invited to go to a new restaurant, you might decide not

Page 134

Intolerance of Uncertainty in Action: Identifying Safety Behaviors


to go because you aren’t sure whether you’ll like the food. Or you might avoid taking an
exercise class at your gym if you aren’t familiar with the instructor.

Another form of avoidance involves deferring decision making to others in unpredict-
able, novel, and ambiguous situations. For example, if you’re getting together with friends,
you might ask them to decide what activity everyone will do, allowing you to avoid the
uncertainty of choosing an activity others may not enjoy.

Procrastination is a common form of avoidant safety behavior. It offers the benefit of

simply putting things off until a later date, rather than technically avoiding anything. For
example, perhaps you’ve procrastinated in making an appointment to see your doctor after
noticing a nonspecific symptom, such as a mole or a lingering ache in your chest, because
of the uncertain outcome of medical results in this kind of ambiguous situation.

Procrastination can also be a strategic safety behavior used to delay the amount of time
available to worry about decisions you make or how you perform on a task. Some people
find that if they delay completing a task until the very last minute, once it’s completed
there’s very little time available to worry about it.

A major problem with procrastination is that it comes at a high cost. If you consistently
delay entering into situations that are unpredictable, novel, or ambiguous, you might miss
out on opportunities, others might get upset with you, or over time a small problem you
avoided can become a big problem.

Partial Commitment
Another avoidant safety behavior is a tendency to only partially commit to people,

situations, or plans. For example, you might keep friends or romantic partners at a dis-
tance, largely because relationships are unpredictable situations where there’s no guaran-
tee about the long-term outcome. You also might not fully commit to plans, perhaps
including not consistently following through on the exercises in this workbook. The act of
keeping one foot out the door is strategic because as long as you aren’t fully invested in
something, you can step away quickly if it doesn’t appear to be working out or if the uncer-
tain nature of the situation feels overwhelming. However, this strategy has drawbacks. For

Page 266

Melisa Robichaud, PhD
Michel J. Dugas, PhD

Foreword by
Martin M. Antony, PhD




A N E W H A R B I N G E R S E L F - H E L P W O R K B O O K

Cognitive Behavioral Strategies to:
✓ Identify different types of worry

✓ Understand what keeps the
worry cycle going

✓ Target the fear of uncertainty
✓ Challenge core fears

✓ Create a relapse-prevention plan

A Comprehensive CBT Guide for Coping
with Uncertainty, Worry, and Fear

If you have generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), you may experience excessive
and uncontrollable worry about things like health, fi nances, relationships, work, or even minor
concerns like being on time for appointments. You already know how disruptive this chronic
condition can be to your life, manifesting in a number of symptoms such as concentration
problems, fatigue, sleep disturbances, and muscle tension. So, how can you take charge of your
anxiety before it gets the best of you?

Written by two renowned anxiety experts, and based in cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT),
this workbook provides proven-effective methods for managing excessive worries and anxiety.
You’ll discover how life’s uncertainties fuel your anxiety, and develop the tools to face those
uncertainties head on. You’ll also learn to identify two types of worry—current problems
versus hypothetical situations—and fi nd specifi c strategies to deal with each type, determine
whether worry has any benefi ts, and cope with relapses. It’s time to stop your anxiety and
build confi dence in your ability to manage everyday life—you can get started now!

Proven-Effective Skills for
Overcoming Worry and Anxiety

“Everyone who suffers from generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) or has any diffi culties
with worry should read this book. … This book should also be required reading for

professionals and students interested in the treatment of anxiety.” —DAVID J. A. DOZOIS, PHD,
director of the clinical psychology graduate program in the department of psychology at the University of Western Ontario

“I highly recommend this book for anyone who feels anxiety is interfering with their
lives, and for the therapists who are helping them.” —LIZABETH ROEMER, PHD, professor of psychology

at the University of Massachusetts Boston, and coauthor of The Mindful Way Through Anxiety

Melisa Robichaud, PhD, is a clinical psychologist and cofounder of the Vancouver CBT Centre.
She holds adjunct clinical faculty and associate positions in psychology and psychiatry at the University of British
Columbia and Simon Fraser University. She specializes in the treatment of anxiety with an emphasis on GAD.

Michel J. Dugas, PhD, is professor of psychology at the Université du Québec en Outaouais, and
affi liate professor of psychology at Concordia University. Over the past two decades, he has conducted research on
the etiology and treatment of GAD with a specifi c focus on intolerance of uncertainty.

Foreword writer Martin M. Antony, PhD, is professor and chair of psychology at Ryerson
University in Toronto, Ontario, and director of research at the Anxiety Treatment and Research Clinic at St.
Joseph’s Healthcare in Hamilton, Ontario. He is coauthor of The Shyness and Social Anxiety Workbook and more.


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