James Shenk, PhD
Narrative of Services:
The Cognitive Therapy Institute is a group practice offering expertise in CBT for anxiety disorders and depression. Our therapists have had advanced training in ERP and other exposure therapy approaches for OCD and other anxiety conditions. We often integrate cognitive strategies to increase motivation for this therapy, to manage anxiety symptoms, and to enhance effectiveness of the treatment. We have a particular expertise in treating “pure O” and “harm OCD”, addressing intrusive thoughts about violence, sex, or other disturbing ideas that recur and create distress.
We offer individual treatment of OCD for children, adolescents and adults, and we offer an OCD Therapy Group for adults 18 and older. The group therapy provides opportunity for support and empathy from others who truly understand the torment and struggles of experiencing obsessive thoughts, fears, and rituals while also providing a structured treatment program that teaches and facilitates the use of ERP and other strategies to recover from OCD.
At The Cognitive Therapy Institute we have had high rates of success in treating OCD. In some cases a lot of progress can be made in a shorter term of therapy, and in other cases we patiently work with you in developing the skills and capacity for gradual improvement over time. We coordinate treatment with psychiatrists for those taking psychotropic medications, and we often have success for those who elect to not pursue medications. We also treat OCD spectrum disorders (BDD, trichotillomania, skin picking, scrupulosity). We offer individual therapy for adults, adolescents and children: 15-20% of patients coming to the Cognitive Therapy Institute are seeking treatment of OCD.
I have specialized in treating OCD for over 20 years and am a Founding Fellow of the Academy of Cognitive Therapy. I received excellent training in treatment of anxiety disorders and depression through a 3 year post-doctoral position at The Center for Cognitive Therapy in Newport Beach and received advanced training in ERP and treatment of OCD by world experts at workshops sponsored by ABCT and APA. I have provided continuing education training and workshops on CBT of OCD to psychologists in California and South America.