Psychotherapy, also known as “talk therapy”, is a form of treatment that requires a person to communicate their thoughts, fears, problems, and so forth, to a therapist. Psychotherapists help clients of all ages to live happier, healthier and more productive lives.
A trained psychotherapist has an arsenal of techniques to treat clients that may be suffering from mental or emotional disorders. The behavior-therapy technique aims to help people modify those behaviors that cause distress, and can also include a person increasing engagements that are socially reinforcing. Cognitive-therapy encourages a greater form of self-awareness, and to achieve this one must monitor how they perceive and react to stressful situations. Changing views and thought processes in the face of negative situations can greatly improve the impact they have on a person.
Studies have shown that psychotherapeutic methods such as cognitive therapy and behavioral therapy can have an enduring positive effect on a people even after their time in treatment ends. In 2006, a study was done on the lasting benefits psychotherapy in clients who suffer from depression and anxiety. It was found that even after the conclusion of treatment their symptoms were reduced. It can be presumed that psychotherapy, whether cognitive, behavioral, or a combination of both, can greatly improve the way people handle stressful situations. That being said, those who suffer from substance abuse, serious illness, job loss, and other stress inducing issues can cope better with them when they are treated with this type of therapy.
There are many psychotherapeutic approaches but the most common are:
The most widely used form of psychotherapy. Encourages clients to identify and correct counterproductive perceptions and thought processes. This form of therapy can help a person lessen or cease problem behavior through use of learning based techniques tailored to a specific problem.
The oldest form of psychotherapy as founded by famed neurologist Sigmund Freud (1856-1939). It is a clinical method that focuses on bringing repressed issues of the unconscious mind to the surface. Through acknowledgement and awareness a person becomes better deal with said issues. Commonly it involves talking to a psychotherapist about dreams or childhood experiences. This therapy can have a lasting effect by teaching someone “how and why” he or she has been functioning in a certain manner.
Developed in the 1940s as an alternative to the conventional psychoanalytic technique, this therapy focuses on the human form and experience. The goal is to help a person develop a unified sense of self by bringing awareness to their true feelings and conflicts with others by focusing on the “here and now”. Therapists encourage their clients to use creative methods to enhance their self-awareness, freedom, and livelihood. This holistic therapy emphasizes that people are greatly influenced by their environments, and accordingly a therapist will be empathetic, understanding, and accepting of their clients to boost their personal growth and balance.