Each therapy session is approximately 50 minutes in duration. Some clients may request, or be recommended, to attend weekly therapy sessions, while others may need to attend therapy only once every other week, or even once per month. Client responses to therapy, levels of motivation for change, and personal strengths are uniquely individual. For this reason, some clients are able to achieve their goals for therapy within just a few sessions, while others may require a more extended period of time to achieve their desired results.
What can I expect to happen in the first therapy session?
The most important predictor in a successful therapy outcome is the relationship between the client and the therapist. For this reason, I believe the first session to be extremely important. It is our opportunity to begin to develop a therapeutic relationship together. In this session, there will be some forms to complete, consents to sign, and insurance information to obtain (if you decide to utilize insurance), but most importantly, I will be asking you questions about your current presenting problem, your personal history and what it is you hope to accomplish by entering into therapy.
I prefer to gather this information directly from you, in your own words, rather than have you fill out more forms and excessive paperwork. The more we are able to establish a dialogue with each other, and the sooner I understand your perspective of your own life, the more effective I believe I can be in helping you. Some clients may feel initially nervous in a first session, and this is normal. Please be reassured to know that you can share as much or as little about yourself as you feel comfortable in disclosing. However, the more you are able to share with me the more effective I will be in being able to understand how I can be of assistance to you.
What happens in future sessions?
Whereas the first session is focused on gaining an understanding of your specific counseling needs, the second session, and those that follow, are about beginning and continuing the therapy process. Together, we will identify your goals for therapy, and develop a therapy plan. During the course of psychotherapy, I will assist you, through various therapeutic techniques, in achieving these goals.
As your goals are realized, your initial symptoms of distress are reduced, and your problems or issues are resolved, the need for continued psychotherapy decreases until we mutually agree to conclude our sessions.
Does therapy really work?
Absolutely! Numerous research studies have proven that psychotherapy is as effective, if not moreso, as medication in treating many conditions such as depression and anxiety. Additionally, the results of psychotherapy are also longer lasting and more cost effective. However, therapy is not an easy answer, quick fix or a magical cure. Psychotherapy is a process that requires the basics of honesty, open-mindedness and willingness on the part of a client.
I am committed to partnering with you in this process. Working together, I believe therapy can provide you with a discontinuation of distressing symptoms, an increase in self-awareness and insight, and an improved functioning and quality to your life.