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What is psychotherapy?


The model of psychotherapy I practice is predominantly Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, 'CBT' for short and Psychodynamic Psychotherapy which is a form of depth psychology (exploring underlying motives), the primary focus of which is to reveal the unconscious content of a client's psyche in an effort to alleviate psychic tension. In this way, it is similar to psychoanalysis. It also relies on the interpersonal relationship between client and therapist more than other forms of depth psychology. In terms of approach, this form of therapy also tends to be more eclectic than others, taking techniques from a variety of sources, rather than relying on a single system of intervention. CBT is a combination of cognitive therapy, examining unwanted thoughts, attitudes, and beliefs and behavioural therapy, focusing on the behaviour in response to those thoughts. CBT is based on the belief that most unhealthy ways of thinking and behaving have been learned over a long period of time. Using a set of structured techniques, I aim to identify thinking that causes problematic feelings and behaviour. The client then learns to change this thinking, which in turn, leads to more appropriate and positive responses. Once they are thinking more realistically, clients are encouraged to imagine how they would go about confronting a feared situation. They are helped to expose themselves gradually to real-life scenarios.

Psychoanalytic therapy is based upon psychoanalysis but is less intensive, with clients usually only attending one session a week or two if they wish. Psychoanalytic therapy is often beneficial for individuals who want to understand more about themselves. It is particularly helpful for those who feel their difficulties have affected them for a long period of time and need relieving of mental and emotional distress. Together with the client I help them to try to understand their inner life through deep exploration. Uncovering an individual's unconscious needs and thoughts may help them to understand how past experiences have affected them, and how they can work through these to live a more fulfilling life.

What if I just need some counselling?


It is widely accepted that counselling is usually focused on a specific problem occurring in the present or recent past, whereas psychotherapy tends to deal with the problems that an individual has encountered in the course of his/her life. Often the source of these issues can be traced back to early life experiences, in childhood or even babyhood.Often people go into counselling to talk and think about a problem in the present, then start to see it as part of a pattern of feelings and behaviours, and then start making connections with when the pattern started, and why. Another difference between counselling and therapy is duration. Counselling or 'brief psychotherapy' can be short-term, a few weeks or a few months of (usually) once-weekly sessions. Psychotherapy is often not less than a year or two, and can go on for much longer; sessions can be more frequent than once per week. When people use counselling to explore deeper issues, and it becomes closer to psychotherapy, then often counselling will also become longer term. Into Minds is called Counselling and Psychotherapy because I began as a counsellor. However I now practice as psychotherapist, usually working longer term and in more depth. If you would like to speak with me personally about either counselling or therapy, then please get in touch by either e-mail or telephone. Before booking an initial consultation, it is helpful to have a chat on the phone. You won't need to book straight away,you can have time to think it over if you wish.

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