Some of the clients I see have already experienced therapy, for others it may be a completely new experience.
Our First Appointment offers the opportunity to learn more about how I work and to consider the specific needs of the client and whether or not I seem the right person with whom to begin therapy, whether the seeds are there for us to build that therapeutic relationship which is so important in the success of therapy. After that we decide whether or not to continue. This may be open-ended or we may take say 5 sessions and then review to see how things are going. Some clients, of course, do very brief work focused on a specific issue and our work together may be finished in a small number of sessions. More commonly we are involved in long term therapy where we consider deep hurt of the past and how that is influencing the client in the present.
There is a continual dialogue about whether or not the client is getting what they need. Our relationship is a collaborative one in which we explore the client’s unique perspective and reactions in the service of the client developing a greater awareness of themselves, their responses to the world around them, their impact and how they get their needs met. We build upon strengths as well as identifying blocks to more choiceful interactions. In this way it is hoped there will be change and personal growth which will promote greater happiness and more fulfilling relationships.
The different focuses of our work are likely to evolve over time as client awareness increases. Some of my clients think they are making much of nothing and we explore together how deeply past experiences have wounded them and how greatly the impact of these experiences may be restricting them in the present.
I see clients weekly, this frequency facilitates a pace of work enabling growth. Usually we fix a regular session time and day though this may need to be flexible for those working shifts. Each session lasts 50 minutes. More frequent sessions may be appropriate where a client is going through a particular crisis.