Why Do People Go To Therapy?
There are any number of reasons why you might want to talk with a professional about your problems. People typically seek therapy because they want to discuss their struggles with someone who is unbiased, impartial and who won’t judge them. In addition, psychologists are bound by confidentiality, which means that unless you are a danger to yourself or others, or have knowledge of others being harmed or neglected, everything you talk about in the therapy office, stays in the therapy office. Going to therapy doesn’t mean you are “crazy”. Quite the opposite, it means you are acknowledging that you have a problem that you would like to deal with head on rather than ignoring it and letting it get worse. It takes a lot of courage to talk to a therapist but the rewards are usually worth the risk of opening up about your life. Most importantly, psychologists are trained to help people with a wide variety of difficulties including depression, anxiety, relationship issues, substance abuse, eating disorders, sexual/physical/emotional abuse, trauma, self-injury and more.
What to Expect
Most people report feeling some relief from their problems after initiating therapy and those who have been in treatment for a significant amount of time tend to report major and lasting changes in their lives. Therapy is not a cure-all or magic bullet, however. At times, therapy can be a difficult and painful process but one that is undertaken with the gentle guidance and support of a professional. Therapy requires that the client look inward and examine issues that may have been buried or avoided for some time. This can be uncomfortable but is necessary in order to gain understanding and bring resolution to issues that may be serving as obstacles in life. The first two to three sessions will consist of an initial assessment period. I will listen to why you are seeking therapy now and what you hope to achieve when it’s done. I will share with you my observations about what might be going on and explain how I would work with each of your issues. Once we have defined the goals to be achieved, the work begins. I want you to speak freely about whatever is on your mind. In response, I will be doing a range of things: asking clarifying questions, suggesting strategies for handling life’s challenges and helping you explore your feelings. My hope is for you to think about yourself differently, to understand what in your past affects how you behave today, and to use these insights to make constructive changes in your life. As a therapy client, the best outcomes can be achieved when you are active in the process. I believe that each individual has a personal wisdom with respect to their own needs. Your input about the pace of therapy, the effectiveness of interventions and feelings toward your therapist are all crucial to a successful experience. I strive to be sensitive and responsive to my clients’ needs and welcome open discussion of any concerns. Psychotherapy is successful when you achieve the goals you have set for yourself. Perhaps you are seeking relief from acute symptoms such as anxiety, depression or bingeing and purging. Or maybe you want to break a cycle of unsuccessful relationships or jobs. I can help you make the changes you feel you haven’t been able to make on your own. Together we can help you stop doing things that are self-defeating and start living a more satisfying life.