Overview of Session 6: Skill Topic 4, Managing Thoughts About Marijuana Use

Total Time: 1 hour

Delivery Method: CBT-focused individual therapy

Material (form is at the end of this section):

Managing Thoughts About Marijuana (form 6A)

Goal for This Session:

• To identify and learn to cope with automatic thoughts associated with marijuana use

Session Outline:

1. Reinforce that thoughts about marijuana use are normal

2. Identify thought patterns associated with use

3. Discuss automatic thoughts and strategies for coping

• Explain situations that may trigger automatic thoughts

— Nostalgia

— Testing control

— Crisis

— Feeling irritable when abstinent

— Escape

— Relaxation

— Socialization

— Improved self-image

— To-hell-with-it thinking

— No control

4. Explore conceptual difficulties

• Review material and probe for client’s understanding of basic concepts

• Use illustrations and examples

• Walk client through a using episode to understand thought processes

5. Develop skills for coping with automatic thoughts

• Explain three general principles for coping with thoughts about using

— A commitment to abstinence

— Recognition of drug-related thoughts

— Need for time to master automatic thoughts

• Describe specific strategies for managing thoughts about using; review Managing Thoughts About Marijuana (form 6A)

6. Practice skills for coping with automatic thoughts

• Demonstrate self-talk

— State a using thought and follow it with a challenging statement

— Make eye contact and speak clearly and confidently

— Repeat with other examples as necessary

• Have client practice with one of his or her using thoughts

— Support client’s phrasing of both thought and challenge

— Encourage client to be specific

— Identify any problems in client’s practice and ask client to try again

7. Assign between-session exercises

8. Prepare for end of treatment

9. Review and conclude session