DBT Therapist Qualities

The essential guide to what to look for in a DBT Therapist

As DBT therapists, our clinical team members play a significant role in helping individuals manage their emotional and psychological challenges. Lets see what DBT therapy entails and what qualities are necessary to become a DBT therapist.

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Dialectical Behavior Therapy

DBT therapist and psychologist Marsha M. Linehan developed DBT in the 1980s, Dialectical Behavior Therapy is a cognitive-behavioral treatment approach specifically designed to help people with borderline personality disorder (BPD). It has since proven effective for a variety of mental health disorders, including substance dependence, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and eating disorders.DBT combines standard cognitive-behavioral techniques for emotion regulation and reality-testing with concepts of distress tolerance, acceptance, and mindful awareness derived from Buddhist meditative practice. The overarching aim is to help patients create a ‘life worth living’ by developing effective strategies for coping with emotional instability.


DBT Therapist in a 121 therapy session with BPD client working through DBT skills

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DBT Therpaist and patient discussing how to use DBT skills while in a 121 session

Looking for a DBT therapist?

Here are several characteristics that make for a good DBT therapist:

  1. Training and Experience: DBT is a specific type of therapy that requires dedicated training. Therefore, a good DBT therapist should have specific DBT training and relevant experience in using it with clients.
  2. Adherence to the DBT Model: This includes the four standard components of DBT: individual therapy, group skills training, phone coaching, and consultation team meetings for therapists. Therapists should adhere to the therapy’s structure to provide the full benefits of DBT.
  3. Skillful and Knowledgeable: Therapists should be knowledgeable about the different skills and techniques in DBT, including mindfulness, distress tolerance, emotion regulation, and interpersonal effectiveness. They should be able to clearly and effectively teach these skills to their clients.
  4. Collaborative: DBT often involves a team approach, including the individual therapist, a group therapist, and sometimes other healthcare professionals. A good DBT therapist works well within this team and collaborates effectively with all parties involved.
  5. Compassionate and Non-Judgmental: DBT therapists should offer a supportive, empathetic, and non-judgmental environment for clients. They need to validate their client’s experiences while also encouraging them to change destructive behaviors.



How can the DBT therapist help?

  1. Balances Acceptance and Change: A key part of DBT is balancing acceptance of the client’s feelings and experiences with the need for change. The therapist should be adept at this balancing act, helping the client accept where they are while also pushing them towards positive change.
  2. Availability: DBT therapists often make themselves available to clients outside of regular sessions for “coaching” calls. This helps clients apply DBT skills to real-life situations.
  3. Commitment to Evidence-Based Practice: Good DBT therapists keep up-to-date with the latest research and are committed to applying interventions that have been shown to be effective.
  4. Self-Care and Professional Development: Given the intensity of DBT work, the therapist should also demonstrate commitment to their own self-care and professional development. They should seek supervision or consultation when needed and attend trainings or conferences to continue learning and growing in their field.
  5. Good Relationship-Building Skills: A therapeutic alliance is one of the most important factors in any therapy’s success. A good DBT therapist should be able to build strong, trusting relationships with their clients.

Studies have indicated that over 75% of patients undergoing DBT therapy experience substantial improvement

Each person’s experience is unique, but DBT therapy has consistently shown significant effectiveness in helping individuals with BPD achieve remarkable progress. Studies have indicated that over 75% of patients undergoing DBT therapy experience substantial improvement, to the point where they no longer meet the diagnostic criteria for BPD upon completing a full course.

At our DBT therapy center, our skilled DBT therapists understand that every patient responds differently to treatment based on their individual circumstances. We provide personalized care and tailored support to meet your specific needs. Through our comprehensive DBT program, you’ll acquire essential skills to regulate your emotions, manage distress, improve relationships, and foster personal growth.

By integrating evidence-based techniques such as mindfulness, interpersonal effectiveness, emotion regulation, and distress tolerance, DBT therapy equips you with practical tools to navigate the challenges associated with BPD. Our therapists work closely with you, regularly assessing your progress and making necessary adjustments to ensure that your therapy remains effective and supportive.

If you’re seeking effective DBT therapy for BPD, we invite you to contact us today and schedule a consultation. Discover how our experienced therapists can guide you towards improved well-being and a brighter future. While every individual’s journey is unique, our aim is to support you in making significant progress in your therapeutic process. Start your DBT therapy today.

DBT client listens to his DBT therapist describe how to use DBT skills

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Amy Matthew
Amy Matthew
I have had so many years struggling with my anxiety and have seen a few professionals over the years but my time I have spent with Jason has really helped me become so much more confident in myself and I can't thank him enough for taking the time to understand my issues and giving me the best tools that will stay with me and help me to continue to grow and become a stronger woman. Thank you Jason.
Jack Christodoulou
Jack Christodoulou
I would like to express my gratitude to Jason Ward for he's amazing help and getting me through dark times and into the light again. (I didn't think it was possible) many thanks life is better now.
Tallie Samuels
Tallie Samuels
I completed all four modules of the DBT course in 2020, and I can honestly say my life has been changed. I received so much support from Jason & Jerinda throughout my sessions, and I always felt like I was in a safe space with them. Throughout the course, I built up skills that I am still using today. I now find everyday life easier to manage; feel more in control of my emotional responses; am able to to tap into 'wise mind' rather than thinking in black & white; and I have a number of coping skills that make emotional crises easier to manage, when they do happen. This is the best course of therapy I have ever completed, and I have tried many different kinds in my lifetime. Thanks to the skills I learnt on the course, and to my own hard work integrating them into my life, I now live a life that feels worth living. Thank you.
Samantha Tran-Larkin
Samantha Tran-Larkin
I have completed 2 modules of the DBT programme so far and I can honestly say it has honestly changed my life. I am not a stranger to therapy. 2 years ago I started general psychotherapy following the birth of my 4th child as I developed what I thought was PND. I also had a volatile relationship. Because of my personal circumstances, things progressively got worse. When I started the DBT programme I was lost, angry, hopeless and saw this as my last chance to solve some crisis of mine. 2 modules in, I feel refreshed and optimistic. I understand myself more and get boundaries. I am more productive and for the first time in a long while I can actually say I am happy. I will most likely revisit certain modules for a little refresh and will continue to use my invaluable DBT skills everyday. Thank you Jason.
Sevda Sipahi
Sevda Sipahi
I was feeling insecure, anxious and depressed. I have joined the DBT sessions. I found it so helpful and effective. Before DBT, l wasn’t aware of the skills. Jason and Jurenda are such amazing people with their knowledge and positivity. They were so supportive. They taught me the skills and motivated me a lot to use the skills. Gradually l felt l improved myself quite a lot and definitely l feel much better now than before. It also improved my self confidence. I am more aware of myself now than before. I learnt to be in wise mind rather than being too emotional or too rational. I want to thank Jason and Jurenda for their good work, support and kindness.
I've been working on my DBT skills with Jason for the past 9 months. In that time I have learnt enough repair damaged relationships with family, to begin to curb my unhealthy 'problem behaviours' and to start to build back up my self esteem and work on treating myself with kindness and compassion. I would thoroughly recommend DBT therapy, I think we all have a lot to learn from it. Without it and without Jason I wouldn't be where I am right now - I'm very grateful.
Samuel Perry
Samuel Perry
Jason helped me through a very low period in my life, I was depressed and anxious, using DBT skills helped resolve my symptoms.
Daniel Fox
Daniel Fox
Got the training last year here and I can clearly say I am much skilled in DBT. They have changed my skill and this course is really helpful. Thanks