Maya Angelou's words represent hope to me, that however we stumble and fall, we can find the strength and courage to get back up again. We can heal, grow… “rise and go on.”
Therapy offers time and space to explore, question, reflect and be curious. It can be somewhere to make sense of the stories of our lives. Those stories we tell each other and the ones we tell ourselves. The experiences and life events that shape who we are and influence how we think, feel, and behave. The thoughts, feelings and behaviours that keep us stuck and no longer serve us.
Therapy can help you to reframe and process your experience, find meaning in it and your own language to describe it. To get to a place of greater awareness is to have choice, a choice to do things differently, to change.
"What makes us stumble and fall and somehow miraculously rise and go on?"
"Self-awareness is a supreme gift, a treasure as precious as life. This is what makes us human."
What is the difference between counselling and psychotherapy? Is there a difference?
I view counselling as offering stability at times of emotional pain and distress in relation to difficult, often unexpected life events. Sometimes described as short-term or time limited, counselling can last anything from 6-8 weeks to several months. Sometimes counselling will spark a curiosity and desire to continue. Working together longer gives client and therapist the opportunity to explore a client’s deeper-rooted ways of living and being and patterns of relating that continue to cause distress and keep them stuck.
Psychotherapy is a longer-term talking therapy which allows for deeper work with both conscious and unconscious psychological processes. It provides time and space for client and therapist to work together to better understand the client’s experience of the world and their place in it.
Research overwhelming suggests that the best indicator for a successful therapy is the quality of the relationship between client and therapist. This has certainly been my experience as both. Therefore, it is important that you find a therapist you feel able to trust and build a strong relationship with. Someone you can connect with and open up to.
Beyond ensuring you find a counsellor/psychotherapist who is qualified and committed to good practice, ethical conduct, and ongoing learning and development, I would advise, trust your instinct. The therapist who feels right to you is likely to be the right therapist for you! You may not know why you are drawn to a certain therapist but often the reasons emerge to become an important part of the therapy and your work together.