Individual Therapy is conducted by a trained professional to help a client work through issues, problems or concerns. The ways that individual therapy is implemented varies depending upon the orientation of the therapist together with the nature of the particular problem or problems experienced by the client.
Although we are interested in and draw upon many approaches to therapy, the orientation adopted at The Lindsay Centre is largely centred on the practice and techniques of ‘Analytical Psychotherapy and Counselling’.
What distinguishes the analytic approach from other modalities is attending to the nature of the mind in terms of the relationship between what we are aware of ‘or know’ and what is unknown or ‘buried’ outside our conscious awareness of ourselves. Often these ‘unconscious processes or forces’ have profound effect on our lives and relationships without us knowing how or why they do. The relationship between the conscious and unconscious parts of our mind helps explain why there is often such a difference between ‘what we know we want to do’ and ‘what we actually do’ in our lives… or between what ‘we want’ and ‘what we actually get’.
Conflict between the conscious and unconscious mind underlies the tendency to repeat certain patterns throughout our lives even though these patterns are plainly undesirable and painful. More often, this inner conflict may lie at the seat of damaging pain to ourselves and to our relationships with others. Analytic therapy assists in the identification and understanding of such patterns with the eventual aim of liberating ourselves from having to repeat them and the pain they bring.
In the ‘analytic approach’ there is also much emphasis placed on the meaning of an individual’s behaviour and experience. As such, we pay close attention to the nature of your own unique set of beliefs, feelings and experiences, for these underpin the sense of yourself and your relationship with others, past and present.
Because so much attention is placed on the individual’s subjective experience, analytical therapists do not, as a rule, prescribe advice or tell client’s “what to do”. What works for one person often doesn’t work for another and hence, ‘instructing a client what to do’ is often neither useful nor effective. In some cases, it can serve to just make things worse by enabling people to keep ‘stuck’, disempowered and dependent.
Instead, analytic therapy aims to offer a unique type of relationship in which a more explorative, non-directive approach is taken.
Establishing a therapeutic environment that is confidential and reliable is also necessary in order feel ‘safe enough’ to talk about feelings and experiences that you would normally want to keep hidden from others… and in some cases, even from your ‘conscious self’.
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