How does therapy actually work?
Each therapist will give a different answer but most would agree that it is therapeutic relationship which is pivotal to successful therapy. On the surface, psychotherapy appears to be simply a conversation between two people. At a deeper level, a relationship is being built and it is here that you will able to experience:
- your ways of ‘being’ with another person
- how you experience and relate to others, yourself and your emotions
- how you avoid certain thoughts, emotions and realities
- the impact of all of the above on your thinking and feeling
- your unconscious beliefs, fears and ideas on which the above are based
By noticing and ‘working through’ the patterns which are unhelpful, lasting change is possible. The therapeutic relationship therefore becomes the vehicle for change, and the stronger the relationship greater the opportunity for transformation. The relationship is also a place where new ways of relating, feeling and thinking can be experienced, emotional and traumatic wounds healed, limiting beliefs left behind and a stronger more creative sense of self built up.
What happens in therapy sessions?
I provide a safe, confidential, reflective space which is dedicated to you. It is a place where you can explore yourself, your thoughts, your needs, your relationships and your emotions. There is no fixed way of working and you may start by simply talking about what is troubling you. Gradually we will begin to find patterns in the ways that you relate to others, yourself and your emotions and it is in these patterns that most of our problems can be located and worked with. A good therapeutic relationship creates a supportive environment in which difficulties, emotions and patterns of behaviour can be not only talked about but also in some unique way experienced together.
What kind of therapy do I practice?
I would describe my self as a relational psychoanalytic therapist therapist. This means that I pay particular attention to how your ways of being, feeling, thinking and relating (and avoiding these) are being manifested both in your current relationships and also and also in your relationship with me. Often these processes are driven by unconscious feelings, desires, beliefs and fears which a trained therapist can help you to uncover leading you to a more balanced and less conflicted way of being. Understanding that these ways of relating were shaped by past experiences can help to make more sense of things.
I have had a multi-disciplinary training and I am influenced by Psychoanalytic theories, Relational therapy, Attachment theory, Humanistic-Integrative therapy, Behavioural therapy, Object Relations Theory, The Independent movement, Transactional Therapy etc.
All registered therapists have supervisors and all of my work is conducted under weekly supervision by an experienced, accredited supervisor. I also work in accordance with the BACP Ethical Principles and Code of Professional Conduct
For more info on @3 here is some useful information from the UKCP:
Bear in mind that…
If you do embark on counselling or therapy, it is important to bear in mind that:
- Therapy is something you are encouraged to take an active part in. Your own efforts, openness and desire to learn will help you towards deeper understanding of yourself.
- Your therapist is there to listen and help you make sense of difficulties and so will not do most of the talking!
- Your therapist will generally not offer specific advice to you and will typically remain neutral about decisions you make in your life so as not to interfere with your own autonomy.
- Therapy takes time and issues which have built up over time are unlikely to be resolved straight away.
- Success depends on building a strong therapeutic relationship with your therapist because insight, growth and transformation more easily take place within a healthy, trusting relationship. It is important therefore that you meet with your therapist to decide if you feel could work together.
Here is a link to an article entitled 10 Ways to Spot a Good Therapist from Psychology Today
How long will therapy take?
In a world of ‘quick fix’, speed and instant change it has to be accepted that therapy is something which takes time. Unhealthy patterns of thinking, relating and behaving which have been used for years to protect us from painful truths and emotional pain need to be gradually uprooted. Time is also needed to bed in new, healthier patterns, to develop a better and deeper emotional balance and to heal from the sometimes painful work of therapy.
What do therapists know about therapy?
All therapists have needed some help in the past and as a result have undertaken extensive therapy themselves. This means that they have had experience being in the position of a client with a therapist and may be able to understand some of the challenges involved. It also gives us faith in the therapeutic process as we have reaped the rewards of therapy. I have great confidence in the efficacy of psychotherapy and counselling. And I believe there is great potential for the therapeutic relationship to be a catalyst for deep and lasting transformation of who we are and way we live. This may well increase our capacity to love and be loved.
If you are considering therapy, I would be happy to meet with you to discuss what would be best for you. If we cannot match our availability, I am happy to refer you to one of my experienced and trusted colleagues.
call: 07549 352 977
email: [email protected]