Do emotions rule your life and your relationships? Perhaps you've learnt to keep them at bay? Skills taught in Dialectical Behaviour Therapy can help you recognise emotions, be with your them rather than becoming them, change unwarranted and unhelpful ones, express them skillfully to others and also manage your thinking, behaviours and urges. Clinical evidence suggests that DBT skills can help people living with Borderline Personality Disorder and others who experience problems with self-harm, extreme emotional sensitivity, mood swings, anger, recurrent depression, anxiety, addictions, intense or chaotic relationships, impulsivity, eating disorders and stress.


Start dates

Core Mindfulness: Experience the present moment without judgement (3 weeks): TBC
Distress Tolerance: Cope with painful events and emotions (7 weeks): TBC
Emotion Regulation: Recognise and regulate feelings (9 weeks): TBC
Interpersonal Effectiveness: Set limits, express and negotiate (5 weeks): TBC

What is Dialectical Behaviour Therapy?

Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT) is the most researched treatment for people living with Borderline Personality Disorder, also known as disorder of emotion regulation. DBT is a modification of Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT) and it applies a range of cognitive-behavioural strategies and mindfulness skills to the problems experienced by people living with emotion dysregulation. This intensive psychological treatment was designed to enhance people's skills in regulating their emotions and behaviour and was shown effective in reducing suicidal behaviour, non-suicidal self-injury as well as improving social and overall functioning. DBT is now used in a variety of psychological treatments including treatment for eating disorders and mood disorders. Recent research also suggests its effectiveness with sexual abuse survivors, post-traumatic stress disorder and substance dependency. DBT skills are of relevance to people who experience overwhelming emotions and want to learn more skillful ways of managing intense suffering, improve their functioning within relationships and build a life that they will experience as worth living.

What will I learn?

There are 4 DBT skills modules which are based on the recently updated DBT Skills Training Manual by Marsha Linehan (2014) and can be attended on a modular basis or purchased as a package of four.


  • Core mindfulness consists of 3-4 weekly sessions and is designed to teach you how to increase your awareness levels, focus better, train your attention, decrease reactivity and be more accepting of current moment experiences.
  • Distress tolerance module lasts for 7 weeks and is centred on accepting difficult situations and emotions and finding ways to survive and tolerate the moment without engaging in problematic behaviours such as self-harm.
  • Emotion regulation entails 7 weekly classes and involves learning to recognise and label current emotions, identify obstacles to changing emotions, reduce emotional reactivity, increase positive emotions, and change emotions that are unhelpful or unwarranted.
  • Interpersonal effectiveness is spread over 7 weeks and teaches effective strategies for asking for what you need, saying no, and coping with interpersonal conflict. Because individuals with Borderline Personality Disorder and related difficulties often experience relationships that are chaotic, intense, and unstable, this module teaches skills for maintaining balanced interpersonal relationships.

How will I learn?

New skills are presented each week and homework is assigned for participants to practice during the week. Homework is reviewed at the next class. The goal of DBT classes is for people to gain new skills, get better at the skills they have and be able to use the skills when they are really needed, such as during times of intense emotion, crisis or conflict.

Who should join the class?

Traditionally, DBT skills classes were designed to serve as a supplement to individual psychotherapy. We are offering places to people with a simultaneous involvement in individual therapy and to those who are only interested in learning the skills. Our classes might also be of help to people who attended DBT in the past and now want to refresh their knowledge of some of the modules.

Where and When?

Our Saturday DBT class meets weekly for 1.5 hours in Mellieħa. The group is held on Saturday mornings between 11am and 12:30pm and we cover each of the DBT modules: Core Mindfulness, Emotion Regulation, Distress Tolerance and Interpersonal Effectiveness.

Fees

The fee is €50 per 1.5 hour weekly session. A small number of bursaries is available to people in genuine financial difficulties. Deposit of €75 must be paid at the time of booking.

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