Counselling and Psychotherapy: What is it and precisely what type of psychotherapist do I require for my particular situation?
Do I really need Counselling?
It is best not to become mystified about the difference between these 2 ways of describing a therapist. Assuming that you are seeking assistance on a reputable site such as BACP, UKCP or The Counselling Directory, then you can feel confident that whether a therapist identifies him or herself as a counsellor, psychotherapist or counsellor and psychotherapist, that this person will have been required to to supply evidence of their credentials, to be admitted onto the site.
Just what is counselling or psychotherapy?
You may like to think of therapy as a healing relationship since this is basically what it is. All therapists receive training in understanding the best ways to listen to a person as they speak about a specific predicament or thoughts they are having and to ask questions which may likely stimulate an useful exploration of an issue that has developed into a challenge.
What sort of therapy do I need to have for my issue?
There are so many different kinds of therapy models available, that it can be extremely confusing to work out which will be most ideal for you and your particular predicament: Psychodynamic or Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) or Person-Centred or Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) or Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT), or Transactional Analysis (TA), Gestalt, Jungian, and so on etc. You might be relieved to realize that much research now reveals that the therapeutic "relationship" is most likely indicator of a favorable outcome, irrespective therapeutic model. Therefore, if you are looking for some assistance right now, fret less about the "type" of therapy available and focus more on finding a professional with whom you sense you can connect.
How do I decide on a therapist?
It is a very good tactic to see a minimum of 3 people when you are searching for a therapist and to see just how you feel while you sit and talk together. Many therapists will offer a complimentary initial chat on the phone or face to face, so you may discover that 20-30 minutes is more than enough time to explore whether you feel a connection.
How can I ensure I have picked out the ideal therapist for me?
It is worth bearing in mind that therapy can really help you to resolve interpersonal difficulties, so even when you don't feel a great initial connection with a therapist, if you are brave enough to articulate this and address talk about it, this might really help you to develop a better relationship in therapy as well as broadening your relational capabilities with people who appear different in your life generally. Think about this example:
J, a young woman in her early twenties meets male therapist L, in his late fifties, for 20 minutes after work to begin to speak about check that her difficulties in being assertive with work colleagues. L listens closely carefully to J and since he does not seem to supply her any
prompt solutions or to say much, she believes that he can not assist her and that he is not seriously interested in her troubles at work. Since J's father left her mother when J was 2, she hasn't grown up with a father around and quite possibly she has hardly any prior experience of relating with an older adult male, a man who represents the sort of age her own father would be. J could make a decision to seek out a different counselor with whom she senses a more "comfortable" connection or she could remain with this situation and potentially discover a lot about herself by means of her working relationship with therapist L. She might learn to connect well with L and this in turn may even begin to help her struggles in being assertive at work. Perhaps J has underlying difficulties around self-belief and self-confidence due to growing up without a father figure and perhaps she is curious about therapist L as well as being a bit apprehensive?
These are just a handful of ideas about how a therapeutic relationship in itself could really help a person to work through personal difficulties. So if you have commenced working with someone and you are feeling unsure about your choice of counselor, then it might be very useful if more you can bear to talk about this at your next session. You may well be quite surprised at how your therapist acts in response and he or she may even help you to understand more about this uneasiness. It is essential to remember that therapeutic training concentrates upon issues like difficulties in relating to others, so a therapist is an ideal person to help you examine your relational behaviour and how aspects of it may detrimentally impact your ability to connect effectively to other people.
If you would like to explore psychological therapy at The Hove Counselling Practice, then feel free to contact us for a complimentary initial chat or e-mail to arrange a free initial meeting.
The Hove Counselling Practice - Brighton and Hove Psychotherapy,
126 Shirley Street, Hove, East Sussex, BN3 3WG, UK