How can therapy benefit me?
There are a number of reasons why a person may seek therapy. One may want to develop greater self awareness and emotional intelligence, find clarity and be happier. One may want to change behavior or patterns that get in the way of having successful relationships or of living one’s life fully. One may have unresolved trauma, PTSD or hurt that needs healing, leaving residual depression, anxiety or unhealthy patterning. One may have negative thoughts or distorted views about the self that prevent achievement. Or one may have the simple desire to experience an authentic connection with the self or another person. Or one might want all of the above.
The benefits you obtain from therapy depend largely on how you use the process and put into practice what you learn. I have witnessed people make great changes in their lives.
Some examples include:
- Reduce Anxiety, and Sense of Panic
- Move Through Depression
- Attain a Better Understanding of Yourself
- Develop Relationship Skills
- Improve Intimacy In Relationship
- Find Resolution to Issues
- Learn Healthy Ways to Self Sooth
- Manage Anger, Sadness, Loss, Disappointment and other more Difficult Feelings
- Improve Communication
- Change Old Behavior Patterns and Develop New Healthy Ones
- Build Self-Esteem
- Boost Self-Confidence and Feel Empowered
Because each person has different issues and goals for therapy, therapy will be different depending on the individual. In general, you can expect to come in to my office, have some tea, sit on the couch at our scheduled time and discuss the current events happening in your life, your feelings and thoughts, your personal history relevant to your issue, and report progress (or any new insights gained) from the previous therapy session. I will guide into a process that will help you deepen into yourself, gain awareness, heal old hurts, work through issues, etc. This will change each time we meet depending on what you bring into the room to work through.
Depending on your specific needs, therapy can be short-term, for a specific issue, or longer-term, to deal with more difficult relationship patterns, for example, or your desire to heal an attachment issue or trauma from childhood. Either way, it is most beneficial to schedule weekly sessions with me. As clients attain their goals and feel better, they will often move toward reducing their sessions to every other week or less depending on what is needed and desired.
It is important to understand that you will get more results from therapy when you actively participate in the process. The ultimate purpose of therapy is to help you bring what you learn in session back into your life. Therefore, beyond the work you do in therapy sessions, I may suggest some things you can do outside of therapy to support your process - such as, creating space for a feeling, opening to having compassion for your self, reading a pertinent book, journaling on specific topics, noting particular behaviors or taking action on a particular goal. People seeking psychotherapy are usually ready on some level to make a positive change in their lives. And if we encounter resistance in the process, we can explore that too. It's all part of the unfolding process.
What about medication vs. psychotherapy?
It is well established that the long-term solution to mental and emotional problems and the pain they cause cannot be solved solely by medication. Instead of just treating the symptom, therapy addresses the cause of your distress and the behavior patterns that curb your progress. You can best achieve sustainable growth and a greater sense of well-being with an integrative approach to wellness.
Does what we talk about in therapy remain confidential?
Confidentiality is one of the most important components between a client and psychotherapist. Successful therapy requires a high degree of trust with highly sensitive subject matter that is not discussed anywhere but the therapist's office. I will provide a written copy of my confidential disclosure agreement, and you can expect that what you discuss in session will not be shared with anyone. This is called “Informed Consent”. Sometimes, however, you may want me to share information or give an update to someone on your healthcare team (such as your Physician, Psychiatrist, Naturopath, Attorney, etc.). In such cases, you would sign a release of information, granting me permission to disclose info to such persons.
However, state law and professional ethics require therapists to maintain confidentiality except for the following situations:
* Suspected past or present abuse or neglect of children, adults, and elders to the authorities, including Child Protection and law enforcement, based on information provided by the client or collateral sources.
* If the therapist has reason to suspect the client is seriously in danger of harming him/herself or has threated to harm another person.