Understanding Therapy

Therapy is a form of treatment that addresses psychological issues using psychological tools. It involves working with a trained professional, such as a therapist or counselor, to improve mental health and well-being.

Therapy can be helpful for a wide range of psychological issues, including depression,
anxiety, trauma, addiction, and relationship problems. Unlike many myths about therapy, this form of treatment is not for “severe” cases only. Psychologists recommend therapy if you are undergoing something that causes distress and interferes with some part of your life. For example, you might be wondering how to improve your relationship with your parents. Therapy can help you with that, or you may want to become more determined when aiming to meet your goals. A therapist can also support that process.

Length of Treatment
Therapy can range from a few sessions to several weeks, depending on your concerns
or goals. While you may want to know how long it will take to “feel better,” there is no
simple answer. The length of therapy will vary based on various factors such as
individuals’ unique needs and situations as well as the severity of the issue being
addressed. Ultimately, the level of therapy is highly individualized to ensure success.

Your First Therapy Session
Your first session will be different from future visits. The initial session is where you and your therapist get to know each other (Rapport Building) and get an idea of how to proceed. Subsequent sessions will be more therapeutic.
During your first session, your therapist may ask:
● What brought you to therapy?
● What do you feel is wrong in your life?
● They may ask about your history, including your childhood, education, relationships, current living situation & career.
● What do you hope to achieve by the end of these sessions

Therapy Methods
Therapists have training in various techniques to help you better cope with life stressors and mental illnesses and create personal changes in your life.
This includes:
● Cognitive Behavioural Therapy
● Art Therapy
● Group Therapy
● Occupational Therapy
● Family & Couple Therapy

Patient Confidentiality
A therapist is requested to keep information discussed during therapy private. In most
cases, a therapist is required to breach confidentiality if a client poses an imminent
threat to themselves, the therapist, or a third party. This information is divulged to a
person capable of taking action to reduce the danger, for example, a police officer.

What to Ask your therapist:
● How can you assure my confidentiality
● How long will each session last?
● What experience do you have working with clients with similar concerns?
● Will you briefly explain what I can expect to happen in my sessions?

Is my therapist right for me?
A big part of successful therapy is feeling comfortable with your therapist. Here are some of the qualities to look for in a therapist:
● They challenge you in a supportive way
● They check in with you regularly
● They help you set and achieve goals
● They show acceptance and compassion
● They help you learn and grow

Therapy vs. Counselling

Therapy Counselling
A long-term solution for recurring problems The short-term solution for present problems
Feeling & experience oriented Action & behaviour focused
Primary process Secondary process
Talk Therapy & other therapeutic techniques are employed Offers guidance & support

Therapy Does Not ‘Fix’ You Because You Are Not Broken