Sessions are active and require your full participation. Being listened to is an important component of therapy, but the key factor to your therapeutic success is you. The therapeutic relationship is based on equality between you and your therapist. You are seen as the authority in your own life, and your therapist is a partner in the growth process.
Sessions contain an educational component, experiential exercises, and homework assignments conducted outside of session. Without new knowledge, we often do not have the mental framework to organize and make meaning out of our experience. Likewise, without new experiences, we often times do not have access to the insights gained from different ways of knowing ourselves. Cultivating this active dynamic of intellectual, emotional and experiential growth produces the life changing experiences that you come to us to gain.
Sessions follow some form of the following developmental progression:
Assessing and determining your therapy goals
Developing a therapeutic relationship with your therapist
Gaining insight into yourself through dialogue with your therapist
Receiving education and new understanding about your growth areas
Practicing new techniques and skills
Integrating new experiences and thoughts into your life
Attaining a new way of knowing yourself, others, and the world around you
Sessions will provide you with a greater awareness of the dynamics in your life and new knowledge and skills to overcome the areas of concern to you. For some of you, effective therapy will eliminate your original concern. However, depending on your presenting concern, the goal of therapy is to gain a sense of mastery over your challenge areas and an acceptance of these challenge areas as a complete picture of who you are. This can result in tremendous freedom and feelings of self-efficacy, confidence, and peacefulness.
In addition, sessions often have a creative component in which you will come to see yourself as the creator of your own life. Much like an artists who expresses themselves in a tangible expressive art form, such as writing, sculpture, or music, all people are capable of creatively expressing their unique sense of self and who they are in life. You will gain a sense of your own responsibility in creating the current outcomes in your life. Through the therapeutic process, you will gain the ability to create the type of life you want.
Sessions will examine all aspects of your life that contribute to your health. Therapy will strive to provide you with:
A foundation of physical health: your basic biological needs (e.g., sleep, diet, exercise) will be addressed
Safety: you will experience safety through the therapeutic relationship
Relatedness to others: the quality of your relationships will improve and you will experience greater feelings of love and connectedness
Increased self-esteem: you will build healthy self-esteem as a natural outgrowth of therapy
Improved thought processes: your therapy will focus on identifying your negative thought patterns and finding more adaptive ways to think
Increased self-awareness and insight: you will develop new insights about why you do things and how to change
New knowledge: you will become educated on the nature of your presenting problem
Development of your potential: you will become more of who you are
A contribution to the well being of others: you will find an increased capacity to contribute to others
Feelings of transcendence: you will feel connected to the flow of life and feel connections occurring randomly and with ease