The Value of Psychotherapy

Unfortunately stigma still plays a major role in preventing individuals to seek treatment.  In addition, cultural and religious beliefs influence one's willingness to participate in psychotherapy.  Despite these concerns psychotherapy can be a useful resource for everyone.  

Often it is assumed that psychotherapy is related to severe emotional experiences.  Psychotherapy is in fact useful for a wide range of concerns, issues and disorders.  Psychotherapy aids in the treatment of mood disorders such as anxiety and depression but it also provides insight and value for personality disorders, which are types of disorders that involve a rigid and maladaptive pattern of thinking, functioning and behaving.

Psychotherapy can also be beneficial for short or long term issues related to grief, loss, relationship conflict, work issues and better self-understanding.  In fact, it can provide benefits in the following areas:

  • Life Adjustments, such as divorce, moves, and other life events
  • Trauma, Interpersonal Trauma, Grief and Loss (abuse, family conflict, friendship/romantic relationship breakups, divorce, separations, death)
  • Diversity (Race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, sexuality, gender, religion, socioeconomic status, age)
  • Interpersonal Conflicts (familial, friendship, romantic, peer and work relationships)
  • Self-Esteem
  • Academic Issues (college, graduate school, professional school)
  • Eating Disorders
  • Mind/Body Balance (illness, physical and emotional health)

One of the most significant benefits of psychotherapy is the confidentiality it affords.  Psychotherapy allows one to have a confidential space with a trained provider who has only your well-being in mind.  In outside relationships (i.e., relationships outside of therapy) others often project their own expectations and desires for our lives.  In psychotherapy, you can explore and seek insight into the best course of life for you.  You also don't have to worry about a common concern with outside relationships, such as the perception of burdening someone else with personal issues. 

The therapeutic relationship (i.e., the relationship between you and your therapist) is important.  One goal of psychotherapy is to build trust within the therapeutic relationship.  This is extremely helpful in providing the safety necessary to be able to open yourself up to disclosing your personal thoughts and feelings.  Just like with any treatment provider, it is important to find the right fit.  It is important to find a mental health professional that has expertise in the particular area that you are experiencing issues.

Because the therapeutic relationship also involves the relationship between you and your provider, it is important for you to challenge yourself to work on the building of the relationship.  If uncomfortable feelings come up in the relationship it is important to work on them within the therapeutic relationship.  In ideal situations, the therapeutic relationship does not involve particular problems of outside relationships.  The therapeutic relationship, unlike other relationships, is able to hold the uncomfortable feelings that make outside relationships difficult.  It will be helpful for you to confront the therapeutic relationship with any uncomfortable feelings you might be having.  This is your treatment and in the end it will get you closer to your therapeutic goals.  However, if you become unhappy with your therapeutic relationship do not give up with the potential of psychotherapy altogether.  Consider whether you and your therapist can work it out or whether another therapist might be a better fit. 

Psychotherapy can benefit anyone wanting to obtain better understanding, treatment for emotional disorders or coping strategies to aid in particular areas.  Psychotherapy can be utilized with a wide range of problems and issues.  Consider today how psychotherapy can be beneficial to you and your needs.