Psychotherapy is a process focused on identifying obstacles and learning more constructive ways to deal with problems or issues. It can also be a supportive process when going through a difficult period or under increased stress. It can help you take control of situations that create stress in your life.
Today’s psychotherapy is generally goal-oriented and focused on problem solving. Many people enter therapy wanting relief from debilitating symptoms. Or, they may need help making a life-changing decision. Or, they may need to heal from past hurts or improve relationships. There are many reasons to seek therapy, and many benefits. Everyone can benefit from working with a quality psychotherapist or counselor. Yes, EVERYONE.
You see, psychotherapy is not just for people with diagnosed mental illnesses. Most psychotherapy occurs in a comfortable, relaxed office setting and is more about “processing” rather than “treatment”. The treatment IS the processing. Processing through past hurts, emotions, behaviors, personal identity, failures, set-backs, obstacles to success, what it means to be happy, etc etc. Human beings are complicated and multi-faceted, with many layers. Who am I? is a question we should continue to ask ourselves throughout the life span. You are continually still growing and developing as a person – well, we hope you are anyway. Because it’s healthy.
Just a few benefits of seeing a psychotherapist:
- new insights into situations and people
- more awareness of yourself and others
- identifying behavior patterns
- improved communication
- active listening
- better focus
- more coping skills
- stronger relationships
Some myths about psychotherapy:
I don’t need a therapist. I’m smart enough to solve my own problems.
We all have our blind spots. Intelligence has nothing to do with it. A good therapist doesn’t tell you what to do or how to live your life. He or she will give you an experienced outside perspective and help you gain insight into yourself so you can make better choices.
Therapy is for ‘crazy’ people.
Not at all! Therapy is for people who have enough self-awareness to realize they need a helping hand, and want to learn tools and techniques to become more self-confident and emotionally balanced.
All therapists want to talk about is the past.
While exploring past experiences and family of origin can clarify thought patterns and behaviors later in life, that is not the sole focus of our therapy. The primary focus is on changing unhealthy patterns and symptoms in your life. Therapy is not about blaming your parents or dwelling on the past. Let’s not dwell on the past, let’s focus on the future!
Therapy is self-indulgent. It’s for whiners and complainers.
Therapy is work. Complaining won’t get you very far. Improvement in therapy comes from taking a hard look at yourself and your life, and taking responsibility for your own actions. Your therapist will help you, but ultimately you’re the one who must do the work.
It’s just paying someone to listen.
Yes, psychotherapists do listen. Objectively. Actively. And they are very good at it. But they are not just listening to what you say. They are listening for what you don’t say, for what is beyond the words. Things that you may not even be aware of – emotions and thoughts that can contribute to behaviors that keep you from reaching your potential. Psychotherapy is a highly developed skill.
Therapists just want to make money, that’s why they charge so much.
The hour you spend with a therapist is YOUR hour of time. The hour they spend with you represents hundreds of hours of training, experience, professional development, learning strategies, collaborating with other professionals, training in special skills, and a wealth of resources. All rolled into one package. And most of this was NOT done at a university, that was just the beginning of their professional journey.
What would you like to be better in your life?? See a therapist.