Anyone who has been felled by depression, crazed by anxiety, distracted by love or jealousy knows that feelings have force. The same is true of ideas; for example, someone may have an idea that they’re not doing a good enough job despite evidence to the contrary. Greater confidence, sureness about themselves and their goals is often what men and women tell me they get from therapy. I think this is because people learn to better know their feelings and thoughts, can respond with more choices, and use their abilities more effectively.
Whether a person is trying to overcome particular symptoms such as anxiety, depression, a dissatisfaction that they can’t name, or is encountering a new parenting challenge, a relationship or work change, most therapy involves understanding and handling thoughts and emotions more constructively, clarifying goals and changing unhelpful patterns from the past.
When people first come in, I ask them to attend to how comfortable they feel because it’s important that people feel that they can speak openly, and that I can listen well and provide useful feedback. Together, clients and I decide the goals and focus of therapy.
I tend to focus on the present although the past often shows up through feelings, thoughts, and relationship patterns. How much we look at the past and how long treatment takes vary. I see people for short- and long-term treatment.
Other specific areas of treatment for adults:
- Groups for women healing from childhood abuse (WoMac)
- Groups for adults adjusting after a relationship break-up
More About Therapy:
- Hidden issues: Clients may come in to therapy with what seems like a situational problem, and find it uncovers something deeper.
- Distortions: A cognitive distortion is an idea that isn’t true. Most of us have certain distorted ways of thinking that we repeat frequently.