I love learning different therapeutic approaches. However, it’s actually not the therapist’s techniques that create the most change in therapy: it’s you! Your strengths, motivation, and social support make the biggest difference in therapy. These are called client factor and extratherapeutic factors, and you can learn about them from Barry Duncan and Scott D Miller. After client factors, the second most important aspect of therapy is the relationship between the client and therapist (called the working alliance). This means that your therapist cares and understands you. The final two factors are the client and therapist’s belief that the therapy will work, and the impact of the approach itself.
Because the working alliance is an important part of therapeutic success, it's important that you feel comfortable with your therapist. This may take time to develop, but trust your instincts. When you have a therapist that you trust, it can give you the support to learn about yourself and take risks.
Sometimes I wish I had a magic wand to eliminate suffering. Everyone, including myself, would like a quick fix to their problems. I have found that creating long-lasting change is a process that varies from person to person. Some of my clients reach their goals quickly (within six sessions), and others will continue to work on themselves long-term (seeing myself every two weeks for a few years). The therapeutic process can involve some trial and error, but I see many clients progress when they are willing to work on themselves outside of the session. Together, we will find what works for you.
At our first appointment, we will get to know each other and complete the initial assessment. This involves asking about some personal history, and creating an initial plan. After the assessment is completed, we will try different strategies and find ones that work. Although I have found the techniques I have learned very valuable, I promise not to put them ahead of viewing you as a unique individual.
What is Emotion Focused Therapy?
Mindfulness & How the Brain Works
The Gottman Method