Which course of psychotherapy is best suited?
Choose the psychotherapeutic approach best suited to your situation is not an easy task. The questions that may arise during this choice are numerous, just as there are numerous approaches and theoretical orientations that currently exist.
In light of this complexity, how can you choose the most suitable approach for your needs?
Let’s try to clarify by reviewing some of the most widespread orientations of psychotherapy and leaving the readers some advice on how to choose your own therapist.
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The characteristics of psychotherapy
Let’s start by saying that it would be more correct to talk about psychotherapies more than psychotherapy in the singular, since the theoretical orientations and subsequent approaches are rather numerous and reducing them to a single concept would be somewhat limiting.
The psychotherapieshowever, they all have a common cross-cutting goal, which is to improve theadaptation and the well being of the person addressing you. Although the different and numerous approaches present specific methods and techniques – accompanying their theoretical orientation – the underlying aim is always an improvement in the psychological condition of the person and a recovery of decision-making power over one’s own existence (self-affirmation).
Does psychotherapy cure psychological disorders?
This discipline aims to trace the causes of psychopathological disorders or of emotional distress of the individual and to structure strategies – different according to the approach, in fact – to reach the resolution of the problem or a new adaptation, even in cases where the intervention is centered on pathologies or chronic conditions of the patient.
How does psychotherapy work?
One of the most frequently asked questions is precisely the one on how this discipline works. Curiosity is to understand how a therapy, which uses words and relationships as healing tools, can support a person and guide them towards their well-being process.
In fact, psychotherapy focuses on the relationship that develops between patient and therapist, a relationship that has very peculiar characteristics. Meanwhile, it is placed in a setting, that is, a well-defined space (not necessarily physical), with clear rules, in which the figure of the therapist and that of the patient act with a common purpose: to improve the psychological condition of the latter.
The healing process takes place through the relationship, which is why the trust and, therefore, thetherapeutic alliance which consequently, become factors of extreme importance for the implementation of the therapeutic project, tailored to the patient’s measure.
Who is psychotherapy for?
Psychotherapy can be conducted on single patienton the coupleon the family or its a group of people, even strangers, who have a motivation to embark on a journey, perhaps because they are facing one emotional difficulty important or simply because they feel the need to understand each other so they can act differently in the future.
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The path to becoming a therapist
How do you become a psychotherapist?
Becoming a psychotherapist is a long and tiring journey, as it requires well-established steps and rather intense work on oneself.
L’iter to follow has as its starting point the degree in psychology or medicineand apprenticeshipa state exam and finally a four-year specialization school that is recognized by the MIUR and that allows the annotation of this qualification in the professional register.
This qualification, therefore, can be achieved both by going through the path of psychology and through that of medicine, as declared by the law 56/1989 which regulates the psychology profession.
But be careful, the psychotherapist, unless he is also a doctor, cannot, by law, administer drugs of any kind. This does not mean that a psychotherapist with a background as a psychologist can (and in some cases must) work in synergy with a psychiatrist, especially in some psychopathological conditions that require the help of pharmacotherapy.
Becoming a psychotherapist is therefore a path that requires a strong dedication and a big one motivationsince this figure is required to work very intensely on herself, which has the purpose of building welcoming spaces for the suffering of others.
The many approaches of psychotherapy
The approaches psychotherapists are numerous, as already mentioned, and their quantity is constantly increasing. Each of them has its own peculiarities mode of operation, and therefore in the work that the therapist has carried out on himself and on others in order to qualify for that type of approach.
The question arises: Is there one approach more effective than another?
It is a question which has extended its range of action for several decades, and which can be said I don’t have a precise answer to offer.
Undoubtedly, some approaches have been found to be more effective than others in the treatment of some disorders, but this does not resolve the issue in a clear, much less definitive way.
For sure every person is different and presents a certain relational mode. This indicates that a psychotherapeutic approach – but above all, the personality characteristics of a certain therapist – may be more effective for the treatment of a specific condition.
What are the most famous approaches?
In order to have one overview (unfortunately not exhaustive, for reasons of space), are presented some of the best known approaches in the field of psychotherapy.
What must be reiterated is that each approach has its own way of dealing with a problem and that some, more than others, can be adapted to the characteristics of each patient. Therefore, establishing whether an orientation is in line with one’s way of being can be considered an important element for the success of a therapy.
- Specifically, the psychodynamic psychotherapy it developed within psychoanalysis and then detached itself from it over time in the light of further theoretical evolutions. The central aspect of this type of therapy is that the motivations and elements considered are analysed unconscious of the individual, so as to bring out the intrapsychic dynamics that keep a certain problem in place and then deal with them in a protected space.
- The Gestalt therapyinstead focuses on the here and now of the patient, helping him to bring out the sensations or emotions present within the space of therapy.
- The transactional analysis psychotherapy among its many concepts, it counts lo script, or the behavioral script learned in childhood and also implemented in the patient’s present, and attempts to study it to understand and modify it according to the changes that the person is facing at a given moment. It considers three different ones states of the psychic instance called “I”i.e. that of Parent, of the Bambino and ofAdult.
- On the cognitive branch, then there is the cognitive-behavioral psychotherapywhich addresses, by means of practical tools, the problem of the individual considering his thoughts and his beliefs as elements that influence emotional expression and behavior.
- The systemic-relational psychotherapyconsider the person as part of a system which must be analyzed in its exchanges and in its dynamics in order to improve the psychological condition of the patient.
- The integrated psychotherapy tends to bring together various types of techniques and methods of various approaches to build a therapeutic path that is as versatile as possible.
- The body psychotherapieslike theBionergetic analysisgo to insert the corporeity of the individual within the therapeutic space, so as to favor the emotional expression also through the body, the movement, the study of the physiological dynamics.
- Finally, the classical psychoanalysis it is an orientation that focuses its intervention on the interpretive skills of the psychoanalyst and tends to analyze unconscious material, such as that present in dreams.
Choose the appropriate approach for your situation
How many approaches how many patients?
Undoubtedly the large number of psychotherapeutic approaches and orientations can disorient the patient and put him in the condition of not knowing how to choose easily who to trust.
When you find yourself having to contact the professionals There are often many questions that arise. One may wonder what kind of professional one has needor which one orientation should have; as well as whether it should be a man or one donnafinally, what are the characteristics that he/she should possess in order for him/her to be trusted.
A good practice is to delve into the path of a therapist by viewing the Curriculum Vitae and doing research on the approach adopted, so as to have a clearer view of the type of psychotherapy they can offer. But the fact remains that, once the patient has chosen who to trust, it will also be the job of the professional understand if his theoretical orientation could be the most suitable for that disorder or for that patient condition or if it is appropriate to advise the patient to contact someone else who has a theoretical orientation more in line with a certain problem or with certain personal characteristics .
Some questions that can help you choose
Despite that, there are definitely gods personal parameters of the patient which must be taken into consideration when choosing someone to contact.
The internal compass it must always be directed towards its own needsso it can be useful to establish whether you feel during the therapy free to express themselvesif there is adequate space to talk about own difficulties o sufferingslet’s say hospitality and whether it is establishing a climate of trust.
In fact, a constant that defines the effectiveness of a certain process often cited in manuals dealing with psychotherapies and in scientific articles in the sector is that relating toalliance with his or her therapistand therefore to good relationship which it is hoped will occur during therapy.
Being able to experience a therapeutic relationship in which there is a bond of trust between patient and therapist is one of the main predictors of treatment success.
The importance of bringing difficulties to one’s or one’s therapist
In summary, it is always good to consider the Curriculum Vitae of a therapist before making contact e explore the various approaches to understand which is more in line with your characteristics and needs. But one must never lose sight of one’s own emotional compassor the emotions we perceive in the contact the professional chosen, emotions which are themselves a theme of work in the therapeutic process and which can without a doubt guide the decision to take a course with one or one therapist rather than another.
For this reason, if some difficulties in the therapeutic relationshipit will be essential submit the latter to the attention of your professional, so as to understand how to face them together and what decisions to make to achieve the well being desired.