Thinking for a Change is a cognitive-behavioral program that assists individuals in addressing the thoughts, feelings, and attitudes that underlie their negative behaviors. The Thinking for a Change curriculum uses a problem solving component, embellished by both cognitive restructuring and social skills interventions. While each of the concepts is presented systemically, the participant quickly learns and appreciates that cognitive restructuring requires some cognitive skills methods and cognitive skills require an objective. T4C utilizes a systematic approach to identify thinking, beliefs, attitudes, and values.
The Cognitive Restructuring concepts are introduced and emphasized during the initial 9 lessons of the program, interspersed with targeted critical social skills that support the cognitive restructuring process. This is followed by the problem solving techniques (lessons 16-21), again supported by appropriate social skills to embellish that concept. Simultaneously, the problem solving portions of the curriculum relies upon the restructuring concepts and techniques already introduced to the participants, thereby integrating all 3 approaches. By the time participants reach the 12th lesson of the program, the cognitive restructuring techniques are so ingrained in their repertoire of competencies, that it is no longer required to be emphasized as a separate entity, becoming second nature to the offender participant. By the 22nd lesson, participants are ready to evaluate themselves using a skills checklist, in order to develop their own cognitive skills (advanced) curriculum.
T4C is a cognitive-behavioral program, governed by a simple, straight forward principle that our thinking controls our actions. In T4C individuals use a combination of approaches to increase their awareness of self and others and ultimately increase their ability to get along with others.