Tag: Therapy

How to Choose the Right Couples Therapy

Statistics suggest that couples generally get to marriage counseling seven years later than they should have so that by the time a couple finds themselves sitting across from a therapist, everything that could possibly have hit the fan has already hit it.  Because of this, finding the right therapist is key.  There are many things to consider when choosing the right couples therapist.   Of course, you want to make sure that the therapist is properly licensed and credentialed.  Keep in mind, that those therapists that graduated at the bottom of their class share the same licenses and certifications as those therapists that graduated at the top of their class, so you may need to do some research. Upon interviewing a prospective therapist, don’t be afraid to ask where he or she went to school and what types of continuing training he or she pursues.  Remember, you’re looking to see if the therapist has specific training in various types of couples therapy’s. Some of these therapies include: Emotionally Focused Therapy Imago Relationship Therapy The Gottman Method Narrative Therapy A good couples therapist will be well-versed in more than one therapeutic method since not every method is for every situation and… Read more »

What to Expect In Your First Grief Counseling Session

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The decision to seek out counseling is always a wise one but when it comes to grief counseling, it is almost essential. Most of our friends and family members want us to be okay and while our support system can be there for us, they are often unprepared for the depth of emotion that we may express while stricken with grief. Let’s face it, grief can be a very messy process. In the first session, the therapist may explain the five stages of grief which are denial anger, bargaining, depression and finally acceptance. While you are probably aware of these stages have you ever given any thought to what these stages are about? Generally speaking, the stages of grief are really about our reactions to having to accept a loss. Grief is about the realization that we need to let go. The therapist will more than likely ask you about the loss and about how your life is now. As you get into this conversation, you will begin to tap into the emotions connected to the loss. This means you will be in touch with your own anger and sadness as well as other feelings that will be more specific… Read more »

What is an EMDR Session Like?

Before we talk about what an EMDR session is, let’s talk about what it isn’t.  EMDR, or Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing, is unlike traditional talk therapy where you and your therapist discuss the issues or problems you may be having.  As a matter of fact, your therapist will remain silent for a good part of the session. EMDR therapists use a specific structure that will guide you to focus on bringing attention to your emotions, your body, your thoughts, your beliefs, and your memories using visualization, mindfulness, free association, and most importantly, bilateral stimulation which is a unique element of EMDR.  This is a process by which you follow a hand or light movement with your eyes, listen to alternating sounds through headphones, hold objects that will create a sensation in your hands, or receive gentle physical taps.  This type of movement stimulates the brain’s information processing system allowing you to draw on a combination of new insights and understanding. OK, so enough of the scientific talk.  Here is what you will experience…. Most memories come in the form of snapshot images that usually represent the worst parts of an event.  You and your therapist will identify some of… Read more »

Coping With Loss: What’s Normal and How to Cope With Grief

old people with babies

That old adage “tis better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all” is much easier for the person saying it than it is for the person hearing it.  As humans, the need to attach ourselves to something – be it another person, a pet, a career or even a home is essential.  But, what happens if for whatever reason that attachment or connection is no longer available to us?  The natural response to that loss is grief. So, when it comes to grieving, what is normal and how do we cope with it?  Well, let’s first make sure we understand what grief actually is.  The most important thing is not to allow yourself or anyone else to put a judgement on your grief.  Yes, you can grieve the loss of a relationship that only lasted a short time.  Yes, it is normal to grieve the loss of a pet, and yes you can grieve the loss of somebody you knew and didn’t get along with.  I had a client that grieved the death of a rock star even though they never met.  The degree of loss is equal to the degree of attachment whether we… Read more »

6 Couple Therapy Techniques You Can Try at Home

What happens when your relationship is a bit stale?  Do you feel like you don’t need couples therapy but you could definitely use a little boost?  The following is a small list of exercises that a couples therapist may give to a couple to bridge the gap and enhance their connection. 1. Couples Interview: No matter how long you’ve known your partner, you don’t know everything there is to know. Finding out new things about your partner enhances the sense of autonomy which can create a newer more fresh connections. Both you and your partner will create a list of 10 questions to ask each other. Then, set aside some time where you won’t be bothered and take turns answering the questions. Examples: What was your first record album, CD or music you ever downloaded? What was one of your best days? What was your favorite childhood toy? If you could invite 3 famous people to have to dinner who would they be and why? 2. Super Secret Surprise Dates: This one is done once a month and you can take turns with it. Simply design the perfect date that you know your partner will enjoy. Remember, this isn’t something… Read more »

How A Gender Specialist Can Help You Through Your Transition

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Imagine if you went to a restaurant and ordered a burger from the menu and the chef came out from the kitchen and asked you to teach him how to make that burger.  He goes on to say that he knows there is beef involved but that’s about it.  Chances are you would find some other place to eat – or in the very least, something else to eat! A therapist may be a great clinician but if he or she doesn’t specialize in gender related issues, chances are some things may be missed.  And, let’s face it, the last thing you want to be doing during therapy is spending time educating your therapist! So, here are the top 6 reasons to seek out a gender specialist to help you through your transition: 1. To begin with, a gender specialist spends a lot of time working with the transgender community.  Because of this, they understand the many different types of gender expression.  You will never be forced into a binary box and you can rest assured that you will be affirmed and supported wherever you are and wherever you want to go with your transition.  Gender variance will never be… Read more »

Is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Right for You?

therapy

Have you ever paid attention to the chatter or thoughts that go on daily in your mind? If your thoughts  include taking things personally, lots of “should’s” and “ought to’s”, getting stuck on the worst possible case scenario, very black and white thinking, putting yourself at fault if things not in your control turn out wrong or mistaking your feelings for reality than Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, or CBT, just may be the thing for you. These types of thought patterns, or “cognitive distortions” can lead to depression, anxiety, insomnia, stress, low self-esteem as well as a host of other problems that can really have a negative impact on the quality of your life.   Utilizing a cognitive behavioral approach, both you and your therapist will identify the problem areas in your life, look at your thought patterns and emotional beliefs stemming from those thought patterns and develop a plan to reshape negative or inaccurate thinking. How does this help you?  It’s fairly simple but very powerful.  When we can identify and change our inaccurate thinking, our actions and how we deal with the world around us changes in dramatically positive ways.  Thoughts truly are the things that govern our behavior. Cognitive… Read more »