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What is Psychotherapy?

Psychotherapy involves the regular meeting of two unique individuals—therapist and client—with the joint goal of exploring and understanding the client’s world: his or her difficulties, questions, emotions, memories, and desires.

There is a broad range of reasons why people choose to enter therapy, but generally it is because something in their life is troubling them. For example, some of the questions that people bring to therapy include:

  • “Why do I have difficulty finding and keeping satisfying relationships?”
  • “Why do I find the same things happening over and over no matter how hard I try to do things differently?”
  • “How can I get past the constant sadness I feel?”
  • “Why do I feel so scared?”
  • “People keep telling me I’m angry all the time and it just makes me mad. What’s going on?”

What Happens in Psychotherapy Treatment?

Your therapist will listen to you carefully and respond in a way that helps shed light on the issues that are confusing or upsetting. Often therapy helps us to become aware of feelings or beliefs that have been with us for a long time without our noticing them. With your therapist you will examine, in depth, your involvement with your inner life and the world around you.

Exploring the complex world of a person’s experience requires a therapist who can listen in a very particular way: without judgment, and with the fine-tuned intention to understand the person’s world from the inside. The confidential therapy session is a time when you can say whatever is on your mind.

The work of psychotherapy is based not on giving advice but rather on the principle of helping people come to their own answers and decisions.

As therapists, we provide a safe context in which to reflect upon the origins of inner conflict, anxieties, troubling thoughts and unwelcome tendencies. As greater understanding becomes possible, more conscious choice becomes available. The cultivation of meaning, aliveness and spontaneity, and of the capacities to create and to move forward in life, may be a significant element of many therapies.

Psychotherapy is a process that requires patience and commitment. The changes that may occur as a result can make a profound impact upon every aspect of a person’s being, from physical health, to relationships, career, self-image, and approach to life.

Tips for Psychotherapy

  • Therapy provides a unique opportunity for self-exploration, understanding and personal growth.
  • The contained environment of the therapy relationship facilitates this process.
  • The more honest you can allow yourself to be with your therapist the more you will benefit from the therapy experience.
  • The nature of therapy is that there will be ups and downs, breakthrough moments and times when it feels like nothing much is happening. This is all a natural part of the process.
  • If you are not happy about the way your therapy is progressing tell your therapist!  Don’t worry about making your therapist feel bad. Some of the most valuable conversations in therapy, even turning points, arise out of this kind of honest communication.
  • If you feel like you would like to discontinue your therapy it is important to come in for at least one final session. Therapy activates deep levels of the psyche and it is important to properly process your experience so that you can continue to benefit from your therapy after you leave.
  • Everything that happens in your therapy is confidential.
  • Most therapists will ask you to let them know 24 hours in advance if you cannot make it to an appointment. Otherwise, due to the nature of scheduling, they will usually have to charge you for the missed appointment.
  • A therapy office should be a comfortable environment. Please let your therapist know if there is any way they can further assist your comfort.

To learn more about  psychotherapy, visit our FAQ page. If you’re searching for a Toronto psychotherapist to help you find answers, you can meet our therapists here.