There are many misconceptions when it comes to therapy. A lot of people think that you have to be “crazy” to go to therapy. Others think that it is a sign of weakness or that therapy is self-indulgent. Deciding to go to therapy is actually a sign of great strength and a way to take responsibility for the quality of your life.
The purpose of therapy is to get “unstuck” and to become more fully and creatively alive, to become free from the blocks and “unfinished business” that may diminish satisfaction, fulfillment, and growth, and to experiment with new ways of being.
Many believe that you have to be in therapy for years. Therapy can be very effective short-term to address specific issues, or open-ended to explore more complex issues, long-standing concerns, or continuing personal growth.
Therapy provides long lasting benefits so that you can relate wisely to hardship and thrive despite difficulties. Everyone goes through challenges and while you may have successfully handled past difficulties, there’s nothing wrong with seeking extra support when you need it.
Some of these issues bring clients to me:
Many people find they have multiple concerns seeming to overlap. The good news is that working on one aspect often helps related concerns.
Trying to over-control or dominate yourself / others, feeling emotionally brittle, anxious, angry, restless, being in our “head”, forming addictions, overworking; in general, an inability to stop.
Withdrawing from others and the world, experiencing a sense of overwhelm, exhaustion, collapsing, giving up, feeling depressed, a loss of initiative, “drowning” under the weight of life, chronic pain.
Through therapy and counselling you gain valuable clarity and perspective, stepping back to see:
Two main fields guide my orientation and approach to psychotherapy and counselling:
My interest is in supporting you to become fully alive. Fully alive requires us to be alive to paradox. When we are alive to paradox, we understand the truth that being fully alive has many dimensions, which need to be and can be held together in creative tension, in full awareness.
In this approach to therapy, we work together to investigate your present moment experience. Awareness is just like a muscle that can be built through exercise. Mindfulness-based psychotherapy involves bringing attention to what is happening right now – thoughts, feelings, physical sensations – with an attitude of friendliness rather than judgment.
Many people find themselves operating in “auto-pilot” throughout the day, still suffering from experiences that have happened in the past or from experiences that are being anticipating in the future. Mindfulness is not interested in pushing away these painful experiences, but rather changing our relationship to them.
Mindfulness is a skill that allows you to respond rather than react to difficult situations and emotions. This therapeutic approach does not only work to reduce overall suffering, it works to increase overall well being. When our habitual reactions are held in our awareness with an attitude of loving-kindness, we begin to have more choice about whether we want to continue engaging in these patterns of emotion and behaviour. As this happens, a sense of confidence, freedom and joy begins to emerge.
I have what I would describe as a quiet yet determined spirituality. For me, spirituality is a coming home to a place we never left, a discovery of a connectedness and wholeness that has always been here but is so easily overlooked. It’s a path that I’ve consciously been on for over 30 years and something I am very comfortable and at home with in a pragmatic and directly lived way.
A desire to investigate spirituality may show up as a persistent search for meaning and purpose, or a generalised feeling of being ill at ease, like you don’t quite fit in the world – but yet nothing is actually “wrong”. You may have even had some experiences that hinted at, or perhaps directly revealed, something profound yet simple that didn’t fit within your “normal” frame of reference.
An engagement with spirituality is at the core of who I am and it informs everything that I do. I don’t have it out on display, and have no interest in converting anyone to anything, but I am interested in working with people who find they have this particular fire burning inside them.
How long does psychotherapy take?
Length of therapy can vary depending on your specific needs and circumstances. Some people come to therapy with a specific issue or concern, and brief solution-focused therapy may be the right fit. Often, that can last six to eight sessions. Some people come to therapy to explore issues that run deeper. They might engage in therapy for several months or even years.
In my practice, generally I start seeing people once a week for about a month. After that, some continue coming in weekly, while others move to every other week and some eventually transition to once a month. I’ve had people who transition out of therapy and come back in once or twice a year for a “tune up” or for a series of sessions to address a specific concern that has come up.
Feel free to book an initial 30-minute consultation on the telephone or Zoom or in-person. If I am not right for your needs, if the “fit” isn’t right, I am happy to refer you elsewhere.
Do I need to be interested in mindfulness and Buddhism?
No, therapy reflects your needs and values. Nothing is ever imposed on you from outside. You are in control.
How do I choose a psychotherapist?
Psychotherapy is all about relationship so I suggest we meet for an exploratory 30-minute session on the phone or Zoom or in-person. Remember you need not decide on the spot, you can go away and reflect on it.
How much will it cost?
I have a 24-hour cancellation policy. Aside from an emergency, if you fail to notify me 24 hours prior to your scheduled session, I respectfully reserve the right to charge you for a full session.
Call or email me, I look forward to hearing from you: 0417 263 780 or email firstname.lastname@example.org