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When you first see a therapist there may be a little or even a great deal of apprehension and worry about what it might be like, or what you may need to do. Hopefully this will answer a few of your questions and give a bit more of a picture about what the process of therapy might be like. Please do feel free to contact me with any questions or to arrange an initial appointment to discuss your individual situation.

Questions and Answers
Q: What is the difference between counselling and psychotherapy?

Q: What is the difference between counselling and psychotherapy?

 

A: Both terms are often used interchangeably although most agree that psychotherapy is usually longer-term and focuses more on relationships and broader issues that are often developed during our early experiences and the impact this might have on our lives in the present. We may work on deeper emotional difficulties and unconscious feelings to help you develop ways to feel OK in your life in the here and now and in your future.

Counselling often but not exclusively, works in a shorter-term and may help a client during periods of change, transition, difficulty or uncertainty. By supporting you to overcome blocks and fears and by developing coping strategies and making behavioural changes.

Psychotherapy requires therapists to have a more rigorous training.

Q: What happens at the first session?

Q: What happens at the first session?

A: The first session is mainly your time to share what brings you to Clarity of Mind at this time and allows us a chance to discuss the type of support you are looking for. It is also an opportunity to ensure we feel comfortable working together and that this is the right time and option for you.

The first session might involve me taking some brief notes or asking you to fill in a short assessment. We will discuss any concerns or questions you might have about therapy and will formulate a therapeutic plan and agreement.

Q: How do I know if I need Counselling, Psychotherapy or Coaching?

Q: How do I know if I need Counselling, Psychotherapy or Coaching?

A: Counselling and psychotherapy are more likely to suit those who are facing psychological distress or difficulties and who are trying to make sense of their experiences. Personal development coaching is usually more suited for people who are trying to expand their horizons and improve their life through goal setting. Although it is common to incorporate elements of either into one another depending on the circumstances - this makes working integratively so beneficial.

Q: What signs and symptoms might someone who needs therapy have?

Q: What signs and symptoms might someone who needs therapy have?

A: There are many reasons why a person seeks support, therefore, the signs, reasons and situations will be different for everyone. You may find you experience one or two of these, many or something else altogether. Here is a list of some common symptoms which may indicate some support is needed:

withdrawal and isolation - anxiety - sudden anger - fearfulness - feeling like you cant cope - confusion - restlessness - difficulties falling asleep or staying awake - tearful - tense - increased/decreased appetite - aches and pains - poor memory - can't switch off - difficulty sustaining relationships - guilt - shame - worthlessness - worry - suspicion of others

reduced sexual function- exhaustion -irritability - repetitive behaviours - racing mind - palpitations - self harming - risky behaviours - addictions

Q: Will you share what I tell you with others, such as my GP?

Q: Will you share what I tell you with others, such as my GP?

A: Providing you with privacy and confidentiality is essential for you to feel secure to explore your difficulties. Therefore, unless you give me your explicit permission or request, then all sessions remain strictly confidential. The only reason confidentiality would be broken would be in an emergency situation such as it becoming apparent that either you or others may be at risk. This will be fully discussed during your initial meeting.

Q: What if I want to focus on something else or am experiencing difficulties?

Q: What if I want to focus on something else or am experiencing difficulties?

A: We will have regular reviews of how you feel things are going, usually every 6 - 8 weeks. It will give us a chance to stay on track, make any changes you need or set specific time frames etc. I encourage you to discuss any changes or issues at the earliest opportunity so we can work together for your benefit.

Q: How will I know if it is working?

Q: How do I know when therapy is working?

A: Therapy can last weeks, months or even years and may involve you experiencing difficult feelings at times as we work through your issues. But there are things you can look out for to help gauge that it's working for you. You should start for feel less 'in your head'; your moods and emotions are usually more easily understood and managed; your relationships (including how you feel about yourself) start to improve; you look forward to therapy and start to implement what we discuss; you feel greater satisfaction in life and more in control of your future and during difficulties.