There are as many reasons why people consult a therapist as there are problems that are a cause for concern. Stress, panic, sexual difficulties, work related stress, lack of confidence and health-risking habits are just a few reasons why you might consider seeking help for personal growth, healing and personal development. Circumstances in life can sometimes leave you feeling as if you are trying to stay above water, but also rowing your boat all alone can be an exhausting task.
Each therapy session is different and may require a different approach. In the initial consultation, an assessment is made to determine the best approach to your particular problem.
It can only be estimated but not fully determined how many sessions you need. Hypnotherapy tends to treat more habitual problems within 1-2 sessions. Psychotherapy involves more sessions. It is important to allow time for an acceptable recovery.
HOW DOES THERAPY WORK?
'Therapy', as such, is the treatment of physical, mental, or social disorders or disease. As with all 'treatments' (or modalities), it is the specific way of handling a certain thing that will be the cause of the outcome, or cure. There are many ways in which to apply this treatment....hypnotherapy, counselling, psychotherapy, reiki, message, physiotherapy, and the list goes on.
With the 'talking therapies', the patient (or client) presents a particular problem or concern. (see The Consult). In subsequent sessions (allotted appointment times, which are usually 50 minutes), we explore these concerns. You are encouraged to express and examine your thoughts, feelings, attitudes, behaviours and memories. This is done in a safe, confidential and professional environment. The therapist will have the skills and experience to create this environment and provide the most secure place in which this can occur.
By exploring these often sensitive areas, we are able to broaden both your perspective and your knowledge of how these instances have come about, and how best to handle them at this stage. Often times, repressed or forgotten information emerges, or you may begin to view certain instances or circumstances differently. You often develop different tools to use to go through your life with more ease. Eliminating old outdated behaviour and attitudes can leave you feeling lighter and much more at ease. The clearer the road, the easier it is to see where you are going.
Therapy is different for everyone, as people vary in both their upbringings, ideas, circumstances and beliefs. It is best explained from your own point of view.
WHY CAN'T I JUST TALK TO FRIENDS AND FAMILY?
More than likely you already have done both. Whilst friends and family support you, they are often unable to be objective in their views. Being objective simply means to be unbiased and undistorted by personal feelings. In other words, the therapist has no other vested interest other than to help you get better. In my opinion, this is crucial to the process. This is the relationship between the therapist and you.
HOW DO I KNOW IF I NEED THERAPY?
If you are experiencing difficulties in your personal or professional life such as stress, nervousness, severe headaches, a bereavement, anger, trauma, relationship breakdown, job loss or retirement, depression, or are crying and emotional and do not know why, then you may need support and assistance in getting through these times.
Therapy aims to help you gather your own resources and rely upon your own efforts which in effect, will produce your own solutions.
Sometimes we reach a point in our lives in which we access everything around us and realise that we could really do with a change...a change of job, a change of partner, a change of attitude, a change of life. But where and how do you start? Therapy can be that start.
BUT DOES IT ACTUALLY WORK?
Therapy does work, but this will depend very much on you, me and the circumstances. I will know whether I can be of help or not with your first enquiry, which is our phone conversation. This is why I make this mandatory before we actually make the initial consultation. For many different reasons, I may not be the right person for you to see, or you may not be the right client for me to see. If I am unable to help, I hope that I am able to refer you on to someone who can be of help.
If we do decide to continue, we will agree upon a number of sessions to begin. This can be reviewed at the end of those number of sessions. But this is necessary in the expectation and continuance of future sessions. Providing that you attend the sessions, then therapy works.
I think the slogan that is most appropriate in regards to this: 'It works if you work it'.
WHAT WILL I GAIN? WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS?
Only you can tell me what you gain from therapy. Usually, an acceptable recovery or reaching your goal. Again, this very much depends on you and me and our work together.
In general, people do tend to gain more confidence, they become more relaxed, they gain a better perspective on their lives and the lives of others. They also develop a kinder attitude towards themselves & others.
Expect everything and nothing. You won't know until you go through the process of a therapeutic session what you will get. And each and every session is different.
You are fully responsible for your own recovery. A therapist can help you to get there, but you must do the work, and that means you must be willing to push through when it becomes really difficult. This is often a sign of getting to the root cause, which will make you feel very uncomfortable and want to stop your sessions.
It is fully acceptable to take a therapeutic break at times. This can be agreed between us. Sometimes I will agree and at times I may believe that it is best to try to work through resistance. Either way, we can come to some agreement.
At any time if I believe that we have reached our plateau, I will broach the topic with you. We can explore alternatives and I can sign-post you to other therapies.