What exactly happens in a psychotherapy?

Psychotherapy is a type of special helpful or beneficial communication between you and your therapist. In other words, at best, this communication, which often takes the form of conversation, has a healing effect on you. At least, however, if a cure can not or not completely take place, your mental suffering will be alleviated. They will usually feel better with time. But this is a process and takes time.

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The discussions or therapeutic work take place in a protected and confidential environment. Throughout this framework, you will learn to understand your suffering with the help of the therapist. They find out what it is for and can change it. This positive relationship experience unfolds a healing effect. That's the ideal idea, so to speak.

Childhood is not always the focus

There are now various therapeutic methods - and not infrequently come elements of one or the other method in the therapy before. Depending on the procedure, either the focus is more on the past and thus often on your childhood experiences.

Or else, your therapist follows the assumption that behavior is usually learned and can be learned again or differently. You look more closely with your therapist for how you have learned behavior or what triggers your behavior and why, to put it bluntly, you always experience the same painful things. It does not have to be exactly determined where your suffering originated. It is about the analysis of your behavior and about relearning or re-learning this behavior.

The relationship works

Or else, the focus of psychotherapy is on the therapeutic relationship itself. That is, the relationship is central. They experience warmth, compassion and understanding through the therapist. That should be noticeable in every therapy - but here it is the core element.

That is, the therapist follows you and your experience. For him, you know yourself best. They know what is possible and what is not possible. And you also know what might help you. But they can not see it without professional help, it is not in consciousness. The therapist will help you find out for yourself.

As mentioned, different elements of different procedures can come together in one therapy. The name of the process or the strict adherence to a single process technology play less of a role. It is crucial that therapist and client come into a good and helpful contact, in a good relationship with each other.

What is the difference to talking to friends or relatives?

Conversations in this context are very different from everyday conversations or well-intentioned conversations in how parents lead their children or a friend with the other friend to help in acute mental distress. If it is an ongoing or deeper mental suffering, your therapist has professional skills, knowledge and experience to explore the reasons or causes in conversation purposefully and together with you. Non-verbal events in shared communication also play a role, which your therapist pays attention to. For example, gestures, facial expressions or posture or psychosomatic complaints and body reactions.

Like the relationship itself between the two of you, discussions should also be the subject of one or the other session in order to better understand and change behaviors or modes of reaction.

Author: Christa Kosmala, Psychological Advisor (M.A. / Master of Counseling)