Modern Psychology

Rational-Emotive Behaviour Therapy

In 1953 Albert Ellis started publishing his new psychotherapy (which he called Rational Therapy, and which we now call Rational-Emotive Behaviour Therapy, or REBT for short). He explicitly based it on Stoic thought, but brought to it a great deal of scientific rigour and experimental psychology. It was the first Cognitive Behaviour Therapy, and still the best suited for everyday, non-clinical, use.

In explaining his key concept, Ellis quotes the Stoic teacher Epictetus, who said “it isn’t events that disturb us, but our beliefs about those events

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