What is Psychotherapy?
Psychotherapy is the treatment of depression, anxiety, stress and sometimes more serious problems using a professional technique such as psychoanalysis, behavioral therapy or group therapy. It typically involves talking to a trained therapist, either one-on-one, in a group or with your spouse, partner or children.
During Psychotherapy, you learn to examine your thoughts, feelings and behaviors, to look more closely at your problems, and to deal with negative habits. Effective Psychotherapy can help you to take control of your life, and learn to respond to stressful situations with healthy, adaptive coping skills. My clients emerge from our counseling sessions feeling stronger, more focused and self-confident. This self-awareness gives them the ability to reevaluate their behaviors, form stronger relationships, and relate with their loved ones on a closer, more satisfying level.
Importantly, Psychotherapy also provides a nonjudgmental space to discuss feelings you have about yourself and others, particularly family and those who are close to you. A therapist is sworn to treat all sessions as confidential, meaning you can trust her with information that may be personal or painful to divulge. Through listening and discussion, a Psychotherapist can suggest strategies for managing relationships more effectively, dealing with painful memories, and changing maladaptive behaviors.
There are several types of Psychotherapy, each with its own protocols and procedures. Individual Therapy focuses on one-on-one sessions between a client and a counselor, whereas Couples or Conjoint Therapy involves sessions that include both members of a couple or close relationship. Family Therapy calls for group sessions, with the therapist meeting with several members of a family at one time. Conflict Resolution focuses on specific issues, and helps two or more parties to find a peaceful solution to an existing disagreement, be it emotional, financial or personal.
What To Expect At Your First Visit
You’re likely to be feeling a little nervous on your first day of therapy; it’s a natural reaction to any new situation. So that you can be more comfortable when the day arrives, here are a few things you can expect.
First off, you’ll be warmly greeted at your arranged appointment time. Initially, Karen will cover any important preliminary matters: you will be advised about issues related to confidentiality, office policies (i.e., policies regarding cancellations and no-shows) and the treatment that Karen uses.
Once the session has begun, as a starting point, Karen will often ask you to address your reason for coming. Depending on the situation, then Karen may ask for more details, hoping to get a better understanding of your concerns. The reason you are seeking counseling is likely emotionally charged. Karen understands this and will find the right pace for you. You and Karen may begin with general reasons for coming until you and she are more familiar with one another.
As with any relationship, it takes time to forge a healthy therapeutic alliance. As time goes by, you will naturally begin to feel more comfortable with Karen. This familiarity will foster trust, and you’ll find it easier to share more details as your progress continues.