Most problems that people find distressing can be best dealt with through individual psychotherapy. I am not here to judge you, and I will listen carefully to what you have to say. I will also be "listening" to what you have to say through your body language, eye contact, speed of speech, expression and a multitude of other means -- in order to help you. Because so much more is involved than the actual spoken words themselves -- I do not do telephone therapy.
Individual psychotherapy will involve you making a commitment to see me on a regular basis -- usually once a week. I find it best to set up a regular appointment time -- then it becomes part of your "routine." Past experience has shown me that when sessions are scheduled all over the place, one week Monday morning, next week Wednesday afternoon, the following week Thursday evening, etc -- the cancellation & "no show" rate is significantly higher. The more regular your appointments, the more successful psychotherapy will be.
If appointments are scheduled too far apart (i.e. alternate weeks) then you will also be disappointed with the results -- too much time has passed between sessions. Clients in this situation end up doing two things -- telling me all that has gone on these last 2 weeks -- then the session is over -- or telling me they forgot what we discussed at the last session and can't remember if any "homework" was assigned, so we essentially spend a lot of time reviewing instead of moving forward. If you cannot schedule regular appointments, you are wasting your time and my time ( I too want to see positive results in my clients ) and your money.
The first session involves taking a lot of background information, such as whether or not you've been for therapy for similar issues, and what you found successful and what you didn't like, as well as your thoughts on what the problem is and how you think it developed. We also discuss the implications on your day-to-day life. I will ask a lot of questions in order to understand what is going on.
Often, clients find certain things difficult, if not impossible to talk about. That is OK, and perfectly normal. Don't hesitate to tell me if you feel uncomfortable -- it is important for me to know. You are the one who sets the pace and we will not discuss things that are troubling to you until you are ready too. For this reason, often the first few sessions don't necessarily get at the heart of the matter -- because you still feel vulnerable and the bond of trust has not been developed. I will not push you -- your comfort level is extremely important for therapy to be successful. The feedback I get from almost all first-time clients is that they were surprised that they felt as comfortable as they did -- the atmosphere is very relaxing and "safe".
If your problems are interfering with your life in any way, get help. Problems do have a way of escalating -- this makes the therapeutic process more difficult and prolongued. Many individuals are hesitant to seek help, thinking they will solve their own problems or somehow, the problems will go away. They won't.
Psychological problems and their symptoms are very faithful -- they will greet you in the morning, accompany you all daylong no matter where you go and what you do and still be there when you go to bed at night. Sometimes these problems have escalated so much that individuals no longer want to leave the house -- or they avoid many things they used to partake in. This is very unhealthy for you -- the sooner you see a psychotherapist, the sooner you will get your life back.
Harbourfront Psychotherapy • Beaches Psychotherapy • Toronto