Pacifica integrates several widely-used and empirically-supported treatments for anxiety, depression, and stress more broadly. Its tools incorporate principles and practices from Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and Mindfulness.
CBT is a broadly-used therapeutic approach that has been shown to be effective for a variety of psychological disorders including anxiety and depression.1 2
CBT is based on the idea that our thoughts and interpretations of events affect how we feel. CBT also identifies the role that our actions play in impacting our thoughts and feelings. By learning to think about things differently, reframe your thoughts, and change some of your behaviors, you will feel better, and be more able to live the life you want.
Mindfulness11 is the practice of focusing one’s attention and awareness on a specific target (typically the present moment) and acknowledging and accepting one’s thoughts, emotions, and physical sensations. Mindfulness has gained widespread use in a variety of health care settings, including both mental and physical health treatment.
While cognitive-behavioral therapy and mindfulness come from different underlying theories, they can be integrated and used together. Both therapies teach individuals to get some distance from their thoughts and to change how they respond to thoughts and emotions. Pacifica introduces users to a variety of tools from both CBT and mindfulness and allows users to select which tools they find most helpful for managing their stress, anxiety, or depression.
Tracking your mood over time can allow you to notice trends and causes, so that you are better-prepared for when things get challenging. In addition to mood tracking, Pacifica also lets you track your health habits such as sleep, exercise, and caffeine. Research suggests that self-monitoring health behaviors has a positive impact12 on them by promoting awareness and self-efficacy.
1. Butler AC, Chapman JE, Forman EM, Beck AT. The empirical status of cognitive-behavioral therapy: a review of meta-analyses. Clin Psychol Rev. 2006 Jan;26(1):17-31.
2. Hofmann SG, Asnaani A, Vonk IJ, Sawyer AT, Fang A. The Efficacy of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy: A Review of Meta-analyses. Cognit Ther Res. 2012 Oct 1;36(5):427-440.
3. Espie CA, Kyle SD, Williams C, Ong JC, Douglas NJ, Hames P, Brown JS. A randomized, placebo-controlled trial of online cognitive behavioral therapy for chronic insomnia disorder delivered via an automated media-rich web application. Sleep. 2012 Jun 1;35(6):769-81.
4. Hedman E, Furmark T, Carlbring P, Ljótsson B, Rück C, Lindefors N, Andersson G. A 5-Year follow-up of internet-based cognitive behavior therapy for social anxiety disorder. J Med Internet Res. 2011 Jun 15;13(2):e39.
5. Kaltenthaler E, Parry G, Beverley C, Ferriter M. Computerised cognitive-behavioural therapy for depression: systematic review. Br J Psychiatry. 2008 Sep;193(3):181-4.
6. Pretorius N, Arcelus J, Beecham J, Dawson H, Doherty F, Eisler I, Gallagher C, Gowers S, Isaacs G, Johnson-Sabine E, Jones A, Newell C, Morris J, Richards L, Ringwood S, Rowlands L, Simic M, Treasure J, Waller G, Williams C, Yi I, Yoshioka M, Schmidt U. Cognitive-behavioural therapy for adolescents with bulimic symptomatology: the acceptability and effectiveness of internet-based delivery. Behav Res Ther. 2009 Sep;47(9):729-36.
7. Spijkerman MP, Pots WT, Bohlmeijer ET. Effectiveness of online mindfulness-based interventions in improving mental health: A review and meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials. Clin Psychol Rev. 2016 Apr;45:102-14.
9. Victoria Hollis, Artie Konrad, and Steve Whittaker. 2015. Change of Heart: Emotion Tracking to Promote Behavior Change. In Proceedings of the 33rd Annual ACM Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI ’15). ACM, New York, NY, USA, 2643-2652.
8. Mossavar-Rahmani Y, Henry H, Rodabough R, Bragg C, Brewer A, Freed T, Kinzel L, Pedersen M, Soule CO, Vosburg S. Additional self-monitoring tools in the dietary modification component of The Women’s Health Initiative. J Am Diet Assoc. 2004 Jan;104(1):76-85.
10. Bush NE, Dobscha SK, Crumpton R, Denneson LM, Hoffman JE, Crain A, Cromer R, Kinn JT. A Virtual Hope Box smartphone app as an accessory to therapy: proof-of-concept in a clinical sample of veterans. Suicide Life Threat Behav. 2015 Feb;45(1):1-9.
11. Baer, R. A. (2003), Mindfulness Training as a Clinical Intervention: A Conceptual and Empirical Review. Clinical Psychology: Science and Practice, 10: 125–143.
12. McDole M, Ralston PA, Coccia C, Young-Clark I. The Development of a Tracking Tool to Improve Health Behaviors in African American Adults. Journal of health care for the poor and underserved. 2013;24(1):171-184.