Psychotherapy is called the "talking cure" and is the treatment of personal issues or problems (including mental and emotional disorders) through the use of psychological techniques. Those techniques are designed to encourage communication about internal conflict. Once those internal conflicts have been identified insight is gained into issues or problems. The goal is the relief of symptoms coupled with changes in behaviour leading to improved social, vocational and emotional functioning and personal growth. The page "tips for getting the most out of psychotherapy" contains suggestions about how to get the most out of psychotherapy.
The purpose of Relationship Counselling is to achieve a more appropriate level of functioning between partners who are experiencing relationship distress.
There are various different psychotherapeutic "schools" or "approaches" e.g. Transpersonal, Psychodynamic, Narrative, Gestalt, Humanistic, Jungian, Analytical, Hypnotherapeutic, Cognitive and Behavioural etc. As a therapist I follow an integrative approach drawing on almost all the various schools or approaches that are available. It is in this way that I ensure that the most appropriate approach or tool is used in each case. Often a number of different approaches will be used at different times.
Some therapists adhere strictly to one school or approach and expect clients to "fit in" with that approach. In my view that is counter-productive, I use as many therapeutic tools as is possible and appropriate. One of the tools that I have at my disposal is hypnotherapy since I am also a qualified hypnotherapist which is quite unusual for a psychotherapist.
Hypnotherapy is the use of hypnosis for therapeutic purposes. It may surprise you to learn that you have experienced a hypnotic state in your life already. For example, have you ever walked along a well known route to a local shop and arrived at the shop totally unaware of the walk taken? If so then you were in a hypnotic trance during that walk. Even passing into ordinary sleep involves a kind of hypnotic trance. Hypnosis is neither sleep nor wakefulness. In fact it is a little like daydreaming, with a pleasant feeling of deep relaxation. In short, Hypnotherapy is a state of purposeful co-operation. It is important to know that no-one can be hypnotised against their will and even when hypnotised, they are still in control.
I use hypnosis sparingly and always specifically agree with the client before it is used. In fact it is a very powerful tool and can be used to achieve behavioural changes such as stopping smoking and overcoming certain neurotic behaviour patterns. However, the most common way in which I use it is to assist in the therapeutic process enabling clients to gain insight into their personalities.
Psychotherapy is really what it says – it is therapy. That is to say that it is a pleasant experience that results in growth, change and resolution of problems or issues in one way or another. However, it should always be remembered that the resolution may be different from how you expect. Therapy will enable you to address your issues or problems in the way that is best for you with the assurance that you are in a safe, secure and confidential environment. At times you will find the process challenging – that is particularly so after about six or so weeks of therapy. If that happens then I would encourage you to “stick with” the process since that “challenging” feeling probably means that the therapeutic process is starting to work at a deep level.
Finally, for clients who live too far away to attend face to face sessions on a regular basis I can work visually over the internet. As a general rule I prefer to have at least two or three face to face sessions first. However, if that is not possible then internet working can be arranged. Fees are the same as for face to face sessions but have to be paid at least one working day in advance by eletronic transfer.