How do I know it’s time to get help?
People often consider therapy under the following circumstances:
• When the way they feel is affecting their sleep, appetite, job or relationships.
• When things are not getting better.
• When they can’t find the answers to their problems.
• They feel an overwhelming and prolonged sense of sadness and helplessness, and they lack hope in their lives.
• Their emotional difficulties make it hard for them to function fully from day to day.
• Their actions are harmful to themselves or others.
• They are troubled by problems facing family members or close friends. Can no longer prioritize what is most important in your life.
Developing From The Negatives:
A counselor can help you identify your problems and assist you in finding the best ways to cope with the situation by changing behaviors that contribute to the problem or by finding constructive ways to deal with a situation that is beyond your personal control. Professional counselors offer help in addressing many situations that cause emotional stress, including, but not limited to:
- anxiety, depression, and other mental and emotional problems and disorders
- family and relationship issues
- substance abuse and other addictions
- sexual abuse and domestic violence
- eating disorders
- career change and job stress
- social and emotional difficulties related to disability and illness
- adopting to life transitions
- the death of a loved one
“Good indicators of when you should seek counseling are when you’re having difficulties at work, your ability to concentrate is diminished or when your level of pain becomes uncomfortable,” says Dr. Gail Robinson, past president of the American Counseling Association. “However, you don’t want to wait until the pain becomes unbearable or you’re at the end of your rope.””Counseling is more than a treatment of mental illness,” she says. “Some difficult issues we face in life are part of normal development. Sometimes it’s helpful to see what you’re going through is quite normal.”
Professional counselors work with individuals, families, groups and organizations. Counseling is a collaborative effort between the counselor and client. Professional counselors help clients identify goals and potential solutions to problems which cause emotional turmoil; seek to improve communication and coping skills; strengthen self-esteem; and promote behavior change and optimal mental health. Through counseling you examine the behaviors, thoughts and feelings that are causing difficulties in your life. You learn effective ways to deal with your problems by building upon personal strengths.
Is everything I say confidential?
All members of the American Counseling Association subscribe to the Code of Ethics and Standards of Practice which require counselors to protect the confidentiality of their communications with clients. Most state licensure laws also protect client confidentiality. As a client, you are guaranteed the protection of confidentiality within the boundaries of the client/counselor relationship. Any disclosure will be made with your full written, informed consent and will be limited to a specific period of time. The only limitations to confidentiality occur when a counselor feels that there is clear and imminent danger to you or to others, or when legal requirements demand that confidential information be disclosed such as a court case. Whenever possible, you will be informed before confidential information is revealed.
How much does counseling cost?
The cost of counseling can vary greatly depending on your geographic location and whether counseling is being provided by a community mental health center or similar agency or by a counselor in private practice. We charge on a sliding scale fee ranging from $40 to $80 in order to tailor our fees to the needs of the client.
How long does therapy last?
Each weekly session lasts 45-50 minutes. The length of treatment depends on a number of factors, including the complexity of the issues, the motivation of the individuals involved, and the goals. Brief therapy typically has a more specific goal or issue of focus, and can last from a few weeks to a few months. Longer term or open ended therapy may have more complex issues or concerns and can last up to a year or longer.
How does therapy work?
In this confidential and safe setting, we will help you look objectively at your behaviors, feelings, and thoughts and educate you in ways to deal with different situations. Therapy gives you the opportunity to explore personal issues with someone who has unique listening skills, and is more neutral than those who are more directly involved with the situation. This leads not only to a deeper understanding of the issues, but also promotes the conditions that make long lasting change possible.
Your relationship with your therapist plays an important and crucial role in benefiting from treatment. That’s why it’s important to find a person who you feel you have a good fit with. A good fit means that you feel heard, understood and accepted. As the trust deepens, this person would be someone you would feel comfortable exploring deeper sources of conflict or pain.
What kind of therapy is offered?
We conduct therapeutic services for individuals and couples in both brief and longer term settings. Our primary therapeutic orientations are psychodynamic psychotherapy and cognitive behavioral therapy.
• The goal of psychodynamic therapy is to bring about improved psychological health through better self-understanding. People often repeat painful, unsatisfying patterns in their lives. Psychodynamic therapy helps people to recognize and work through the painful feelings that often underlie these patterns of relating to the world so that they can make choices to do things differently. We utilize utilizes both brief and long term psychodynamic therapy.
• Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) emphasizes the role of thinking in how we feel and what we do and stresses the fact that that irrational thinking or faulty perceptions cause our negative feelings. The goals are to restructure one’s thoughts, perceptions, and beliefs. Such restructuring facilitates behavioral and emotional change. CBT is especially helpful in treating anxiety and depression.
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