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Break Free From Limiting Beliefs

Schema Therapy

Bay Area CBT Center

Discover Deeper Change with Schema Therapy at Bay Area CBT Center

If you find yourself caught in repetitive cycles in relationships or if limiting beliefs are preventing you from reaching your full potential, Schema Therapy at the Bay Area CBT Center could be the solution you’re looking for. 

We excel in weaving Schema Therapy techniques into a diverse array of therapeutic approaches, tailored to unlock your path to growth and healing. Schema Therapy goes beyond symptom relief to target the root causes of personal struggles, offering lasting change and resilience.

happy lady chatting with a therapist in san francisco bay area cbt center


a happy man doing therapy with a schema therapist in san francisco

What is Schema Therapy?

Schema Therapy combines cognitive, behavioral, experiential, and interpersonal therapies with attachment theory to address deep-seated schemas. These persistent, self-defeating themes influence our perceptions and behaviors.

These schemas can lead to recurring issues in your life, creating a self-fulfilling prophecy of failure, dissatisfaction, and relational difficulties. These schemas develop early and are reinforced by subsequent experiences, shaping how we view the world, ourselves, and others. 

The goal of Schema Therapy is to develop healthier ways of thinking, feeling, and behaving, addressing the unmet needs at the heart of these schemas. Through a process of emotional relearning and experiential exercises, it promotes healing, helping you break free from past constraints and move towards a more fulfilling life.

Unraveling Maladaptive Schemas

Schemas are deeply ingrained patterns of thinking, feeling, and behaving that develop in childhood. They act like a pair of sunglasses, shaping how we interpret the world around us and influencing our reactions to various situations. Schemas are templates formed from past experiences. They significantly impact our interactions, particularly in how we form and maintain relationships and how we see ourselves.

Central to Schema Therapy is identifying maladaptive schemas like abandonment, emotional deprivation, or failure, which dictate how we perceive and relate with the world. These schemas often set the stage for psychological challenges, influencing our behavior in ways that confirm our worst fears and assumptions. Schema Therapy aims to illuminate and modify these ingrained patterns, fostering healthier perspectives and interactions.

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10 Key Interpersonal Schemas

image says old thinking same results representing how schema therapy helps you overcome limiting beliefs

Breaking the Cycle of Schema Reinforcement

Schema Coping Behaviors (SCB’s) are strategies we develop in early childhood to manage the distress caused by our schemas. Although intended to provide relief, these behaviors often end up reinforcing the beliefs they are meant to protect against. This creates a self-fulfilling prophecy that validates our deepest fears.

For example, fear of abandonment can lead to behaviors like clinging to others or blaming them when feeling insecure. Ironically, these actions, meant to prevent being left alone, can actually drive people away, making abandonment more likely and reinforcing our beliefs.

This illustrates the cyclic nature of schemas, where coping behaviors end up strengthening the schema, trapping us in a loop of counterproductive actions and beliefs. Schema therapy can help you break free from this cycle. It offers strategies to identify, understand, and replace these unhelpful patterns with healthier ways of responding.

Schema Therapy Services We Offer

We provide Schema Therapy In- Person and Online

Two women engaged in a trauma therapy session in San Francisco, with one woman listening intently to the other who is speaking.


A young woman sitting on a couch, smiling and talking to another person during a trauma therapy session, with a bookshelf and plant in the background.

Teen Therapy

A trauma therapist taking notes during a session with a couple sitting closely together on a couch, looking concerned.

couple Therapy

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Group Therapy

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family Therapy


How to Start Schema Therapy with Us

Start your healing journey today!

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Matching Appointment

Book a free consult with our specialist to assess your needs.

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Therapist Match

We’ll match you with a therapist who fits your goals.

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Schedule Your Session

Choose video, phone, or in-person for your first session.

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Start Therapy

If the initial therapist match isn’t ideal, we’ll switch you for free.

Ready to take the first step?

Deep Dive into Schema Therapy Techniques

Cognitive Restructuring

Systematically identifying and challenging distorted beliefs to promote healthier, adaptive thinking patterns.

Imagery Rescripting

Revisiting past memories and altering their emotional impact through guided visualization techniques.

Pattern Breaking

Actively changing persistent behaviors that perpetuate harmful schemas, such as avoidance or overcompensation.

Chair Work

Conducting dialogues with oneself or imagined others to express deep feelings and work through internal conflicts.

Limited Reparenting

Offering yourself the emotional support, validation, and guidance that you lacked in childhood and healing your inner child.

Somatic Techniques

Facilitating the acknowledgment, acceptance, and healthy expression of previously suppressed emotions.

an illustration of a hand holding a brain with a puzzle piece in it representing how schema therapy can help you rewire your mind

Revolutionizing Mental Health with SchemACT

SchemACT Therapy is a pioneering holistic approach developed by Dr. Lev, the founder of the Bay Area CBT Center. SchemACT masterfully integrates Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), Somatic Techniques, and Schema Therapy. Dr. Lev, having researched this approach extensively and authored several books on the subject, offers a unique healing pathway. 

This innovative method blends ACT’s focus on mindfulness and values with Schema Therapy’s aim to unravel life-long patterns. It offers a comprehensive solution to psychological challenges. SchemACT not only addresses immediate distress but also targets the underlying causes of psychological issues, paving the way for enduring healing and personal growth.


Why Choose Schema Therapy at the Bay Area CBT Center?

We understand that taking the first step towards treatment can be daunting. That’s why we’ve created a supportive and compassionate environment where you can feel safe to overcome your limiting beliefs.

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Leading in Innovation

Our team is at the forefront of mental health, contributing to Schema Therapy research and literature. This commitment to innovation ensures you receive the most effective, science-backed treatments available.

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Personalized Healing

We understand everyone's journey is unique. Our approach to therapy is highly customized, combining research-based treatments to fit your unique needs and goals, ensuring deep, meaningful change.

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Comprehensive Care

Our holistic approach combines cutting-edge techniques, cognitive-behavioral insights, mindfulness, and attachment theory to offer integrative care that addresses mind, body, and spirit.

Specialized Schema Therapy Services

In-Person and Online Schema Therapy

Our therapy sessions are tailored to your unique needs, employing targeted techniques and interventions to address your specific schemas. We offer a flexible hybrid model, providing both in-person therapy sessions across the Bay Area and online therapy throughout California.

Schema Therapy Groups & Workshops

Our schema therapy groups, including those focusing on enhancing intimacy, mindful dating, and healing attachment wounds, foster a communal space for shared growth and understanding. These carefully crafted workshops use group-centric techniques and are available both in-person and online through virtual sessions.

Schema Therapy for Couples & Families

Schema therapy is particularly beneficial for couples and families, aiming to enhance relationships by addressing both shared and individual schemas. Schema interventions promote improved communication and deeper connection. We provide specialized sessions that cater to the dynamics of couples and family relationships.

Evidence-Based Power of Schema Therapy

The Power of Schema Therapy is grounded in solid research and clinical evidence. Through a blend of cognitive, behavioral, and emotional strategies, this approach works to help you identify and modify the maladaptive schemas causing you recurring issues. Scientific studies have shown its success in treating personality disorders, depression, and anxiety, proving it’s a reliable way for you to achieve lasting change. Studies show it’s also effective for couples, making your connection stronger.

Schema Therapy is an interpersonal treatment that is highly effective in helping you improve your relationships, meet your needs, heal attachment wounds, and address interpersonal trauma. This comprehensive approach can assist you in breaking deeply ingrained relational dynamics and is empirically supported for couples therapy. 

Discover your limiting beliefs in relationships by taking our schemas quiz.

Our Team of Licensed Therapists

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Avigail Lev, PsyD

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Molly Keirein, PsyD

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Vesal Vakili, LMFT

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Lian Zhu, PhD

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Lori Sparrow, LMFT

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Brandon Mason, PsyD

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Manmeet Rattu, PsyD

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Jacqueline Robertson, LMFT

Our Promise

Check Out Our Books

Acceptance and Commitment Therapy in the Bay Area. You could say we wrote the books on it.