How does psychological treatment help?
Psychological treatment aims to help in ways that are quite distinct from most human relationships that we experience in the society. To begin with, your therapist will focus on providing you with a safe, comfortable and non-judgemental space in which you are able to express your thoughts and emotions and feel listened to. Such an environment would be an important facilitator in the process of change, growth and healing. Your therapist will refrain from offering advice in most circumstances, and will instead assist you with the help of a range of therapeutic tools to discover for your self better ways of processing, responding to and managing your problems.
Please feel free to browse the following links to learn about some of the therapeutic techniques employed by our therapist and how they can each help. You may also wish to have a read of our FAQ to find out more about the effectiveness of psychological therapy and some common questions around it.
Cognitive – Behavioural Therapy
Cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT) is built on the basis that cognitions (thoughts) influence emotions and behaviours, and in turn behaviours and emotions can influence cognitions (thoughts). There are two components to CBT:
Cognitive therapy: Cognitive therapy is based on the theory that undesired emotions and behaviours are the result of faulty patterns of thinking. Your therapist will assist you to identify, reassess and replace these dysfunctional thoughts with more helpful ones, which will in turn lead to an alleviation of your distressful emotions and behaviour. Your therapist may also assist by training you in helpful skills such as stress management, social skills training, parent training, anger management etc.
Behaviour therapy: is based on the theory that behaviour is learned and therefore can be changed. Your therapist will assist you through a variety of helpful techniques. Exposure therapy and relaxation techniques are examples of techniques that aim to reduce symptoms such as anxiety or panic. Behaviour modification techniques can be used to understand what conditions sustain unhelpful behavior and ways to change these in yourself or others (e.g. parenting and relationships).
Mindfulness based cognitive therapy
The benefits of mindfulness training goes well beyond a reduction to unwanted psychological symptoms. These techniques can be used as lifelong tools that can continue to enhance your sense of wellbeing and resilience. This therapeutic technique uses mindfulness meditation and focuses on changing your relationship with your thoughts, rather than changing their content. The outcome is increased contentment and life satisfaction through an interruption to patterns of ruminative thought.
Rather than focusing on specific thoughts or emotions, schema therapy focuses on identifying and changing maladaptive schemas and their associated unhelpful coping strategies. Schemas are belief patterns that have been formed within us about ourselves, the world and other people, as a result of our past experiences (in particular childhood experiences). These schemas significantly impact how we perceive and interpret future events and behave in various situations.
Acceptance and Commitment Therapy
Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) works based on the principle that efforts to control or escape unwanted emotions, thoughts and sensations are often ineffective and in fact counterproductive. In order for change to take place, we must first increase our acceptance of these experiences. Your therapist will assist you to increase your acceptance of your emotional and mental experiences, while moving toward your desired goals.
Solution focused therapy
Solution-focused therapy is a brief goal-focused therapeutic approach that helps the process of change by constructing more helpful and productive practical solutions.