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What is Psychotherapy /Counselling

There are times when the pressures of modern life become quite difficult to balance. Most people experience emotional difficulties such as anxiety or depression at some stage in their life and often these feelings will pass or be resolved by the individual alone without seeking outside help. Sometimes, however, these difficulties persist, causing unhappiness at home, at work and in relationships and you may feel that you need some help to understand those difficulties. Psychotherapy/Counselling offers a secure and confidential relationship through which you can come to understand yourself and your life in a new way. It is an opportunity to see and make sense of long-standing patterns of thinking and behaviour. It can help to explore and understand thoughts and feelings which may seem overwhelming, frightening or confusing. It is a chance to discover that you have choices where previously you felt you had none and an opportunity to resolve old hurts and conflicts to enable you to move onto  lasting psychological change, brought about through increased insight. These changes include:

  • Increased ability to feel, identify and express emotions.
  • Recognise patterns of behaviour and make connections (e.g. between feelings and behaviours or past and present experiences).
  • Greater understanding of behaviours.
  • Explore and Learn about alternative ways to process and express emotions.
  • Re-evaluating perceptions and past experiences  and develop self-acceptance

So Why not just talk to a friend…

A frequently asked question is “Why do I need a Psychotherapist/Counsellor if I have good friends?” Well, both are important but the roles and perspectives are very different.

Listed below are some of the benefits of working with a Psychotherapist/Counsellor:

  • Therapy provides a safe, supportive, empathic space to explore the aspects of self you may not be willing or able to explore within the context of friendships or other personal relationships, Therapy provides a space where you don’t have to hide aspects of yourself  because of the fear of hurting or burdening anyone by sharing your true thoughts or feelings.
  • The focus of your Therapy is you what you desire to achieve and not what someone else desires for you.
  • Friends may keep your confidence therapists are ethically bound to keep confidentiality by the BACP Code of Ethics 
  • Friends can help you solve today’s problems a good therapist can help you understand today’s problems and empower you to solve tomorrows by yourself.
  • Friends are oftentimes either happy for us, or afraid for us, but typically are not invested in ensuring that their support fosters long-term growth and change. Therapists are trained to listen in order to understand you, encourage independent thinking and self-reflection so you may understand yourself by highlighting aspects of yourself that may be hidden Psychologically.

Who Can Benefit

You! Two things in life are rare. Time for yourself, and someone who will listen to what you have to say without jumping to give directions and advice. Your Psychotherapist may at times ask questions, make observations or suggest ways forward. Mainly, however, they will provide you with a space that is just for you, listen to you and help you clarify and understand difficult thoughts and feelings.