Frequently Asked Questions About Psychotherapy, Psychology and Counseling.
How do I know that I need psychotherapy?
Psychotherapy can be a powerful experience. Usually your intuition and feeling will tell you that it’s the right time for it, and you don’t need any external indicators.
If you are still uncertain about it, below you’ll find some examples of situations that suggest that starting therapy can be very beneficial for you in this moment of your life.
Are you experiencing any of the following?
- I have problems in my relationship, I feel I repeat patterns and don’t know how to change this.
- I feel hurt and misunderstood by my partner, often feel alone in my relationship and I don’t know how to address that with him/her.
- I’ve changed countries I’m struggling to find my own place in the new environment.
- I would like to organize my thoughts and understand my current life situation.
- I have potential and ideas, but I cannot accomplish or even start doing the things I feel passionate about.
- I struggle with anxiety, fears and insecurity.
- I have low self-esteem.
- I experience frequent mood changes and I’m emotionally unstable.
- I’m experiencing some obsessive thoughts or behaviors that I can’t control
- I’m experiencing significant emotional pain or struggle and I cannot overcome it by myself. (!!!!) correct
- I feel that just ignoring the pain, and trying to go on, without addressing it, means losing an important part of myself. (!!!) correct
- I came to this city with hopes and expectations to change some things in my life, but the old difficulties keep reappearing and I’m experiencing new challenges.
- I need a person to help me understand my emotions and to find meaning in my life.
- I feel that I have difficulties with my anger management.
- I’m experiencing sleeping problems.
- I often have nightmares or upsetting dreams.
- I experience fear of speaking in public.
- I feel the need to develop more self-knowledge and awareness in order to unfold my potential and resources.
- I need someone to help me understand what has happened or what is happening in my life.
- I’ve experienced a significant loss and I need a secure place to process the grief and regain stability in my life.
- There are aspects of myself that I feel are out of my control and directly affect me and my surrounding.
How many sessions does psychotherapy last?
Psychotherapy is an individual process for every person. Depending on the objectives and needs of each client, a process may vary in the number of sessions. Psychotherapy is experienced as a process, so often more than one session is required to achieve real progress and change.
When should I start psychotherapy?
The decision-making around the idea of starting or not a psychotherapeutic process can be based on several ideas.
- I’m feeling an important emotional distress that I can’t handle on my own.
- I am going through important changes in my life, that in some way affect my mood and mental stability and I feel that I need help to cope with it.
- I want to know more about my resources and abilities to develop social skills.
- I suffer from psychological and mental illness and I’m interested in understanding and overcoming some symptoms.
- I am looking for meaning in my life and I need to regain it, so i can move forward.
What is the difference between a psychotherapist and a psychiatrist?
A psychiatrist is a doctor specialized in mental disorders, who treats patients through the use of medications and pharmacological treatment. A psychotherapist establishes a therapeutic relationship and works with a client using different methods and techniques derived from psychology, theoretical approaches and practices. Psychiatrists and psychologists often work together. A psychologist its not able to write prescriptions, but he may recommend a client to a psychiatrist in order to receive medications if there is a necessity.
How to choose a psychotherapist?
Choosing the right therapist is not that easy. A therapist is a person that you need to connect well with- it enables trust and mutual respect.
While choosing a therapist, beside reading their personal descriptions, take a look at their photos. A picture tells a lot of information! Intuitively feel if this is a person that you would cooperate with. Most people have also an instinctive idea on gender they would prefer to work with. Try to also think where does your choice and preference come from.
Another aspect is the theoretical orientation. If you have no idea about what theoretical orientation might work for you and reading about that doesn’t help, feel free to ask the therapist! Call the person that you think you might like- a conversation might help you to make your final decision. Ask him about his experience and find out if it’s related to your area of interest.
Do I need individual or couples therapy?
In individual therapy, the focus is on the development of a one-to-one relationship with the therapist. It enables the creation of an accepting atmosphere along with the use of techniques for the desired purpose. The person is involved in a self-reflective process on his or her emotions and behaviours.
In couples therapy, the focus is mainly on improving communication and relationship patterns between two people. It involves the therapist entering couple’s way of life more directly. After observing and analyzing the couple, the therapist makes suggestions about changes in their roles, habits and routines.
How can I benefit from psychotherapy?
Therapy can definitely help you to handle emotions, problems and stressful factors, even if they are dramatically life- changing or traumatic. It’s a great tool for overcoming anxiety, depression, addiction or relationship problems. It is a very helpful way to look for meaning in the disturbing events and establish emotional stability and wellness in life. Whether you’re struggling in a professional life, going through conflicts or trying to modify your everyday habits, therapy can be a great support in making a significant, satisfying change in your life.
Is psychotherapy only for people with psychiatric disorders?
There is a common thought that psychotherapy is often related to mental disorders and psychiatric conditions, but the benefits of undergoing a psychotherapeutic process are not only limited to this specific group. It is also beneficial for any person who wants to overcome their emotional conflicts, as well as to strengthen the positive aspects of their life and to develop their own potential.