Self Monitoring: A strategy utilized in CBT and other forms of therapy with the goal of increasing the individual's awareness of engagement in behaviors i.e. eating patterns, self-harming patterns, engagement in compensatory behaviors, use of effective skills, etc. Oftentimes, individuals are not aware of the frequency or intensity of symptoms that they engage in or don't acknowledge the positive things that they may be doing to manage urges or interrupt behaviors. Therefore, a helpful component of treatment is keeping a diary card. The diary card can ask patients to document/record food intake, frequency of engagement in eating disorder targeted behaviors (i.e. purging, restriction, exercise, restriction) and/or use of skills (i.e. use of support from parent, left message for therapist, talked about urge in group instead of acting on urge). The goals of self monitoring include: increasing awareness of engagement in targeted behaviors, encouraging use of skills and support, replacing impulsive engagement with stop and think strategy and for accountability.
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