How can therapy and coaching help me?
A number of benefits are available from participating in therapy and coaching. Many times a therapist can provide support, problem-solving skills, and enhanced coping strategies for issues such as relationship problems, grief, depression, anxiety, challenges with parenting, unresolved childhood issues, or stress management. Coaching offers an additional support by providing practical, action-oriented strategies that can help with meeting goals, releasing blocks in creativity, or getting "unstuck" to move forward in life. Clients find that having a clinician who is trained and experienced in both therapy and coaching approaches allows them to have more comprehensive options to address their needs. Working with a professional who is trained as both a Therapist and Coach can provide a fresh perspective on a difficult problem or point you in the direction of a solution. The benefits you obtain from your sessions are dependent on how well you use the process and put into practice what you learn. Some of the benefits available from therapy and coaching include:
How would I benefit from going to aTherapist who is also trained as a Career and Life Coach?
- Attaining a better understanding of yourself, your goals and values
- Developing skills for improving your relationships
- Learning new ways to cope with stress and anxiety
- Discovering new ways to solve problems in your marriage or family
- Learning job search skills and strategies for unemployment or a job change
- Managing anxiety, grief, depression, and other emotional pressures
- Improving communications and listening skills
- Goal-setting, coaching, and accountability for life balance
- Changing old behavior patterns and developing new ones
- Improving your self-esteem and boosting self-confidence
- Finding resolution to the issues or concern that lead you to seek help
There may be more than one area of your life that is in need of attention whether you recognize it or not. I often help my clients discover a deeper understanding of how the different pieces of their life impact each other through utilizing therapy and coaching. For example, a marital relationship might be negatively impacted by unemployment. My approach would be to address the emotional issues affecting the marital or family relationship like anger, low self-esteem or anxiety, while also helping the job seeker with specific job search strategies such as their resume, networking/marketing skills, and interview prep to help them get back to work as soon as possible. We would set goals and design action plans to get their life and relationship back on track....one professional, comprehensive service.
Do I really need help from a professional? I can usually handle my problems on my own.
Everyone goes through challenging situations in life, and while you may have successfully navigated through other difficulties you've faced, there's nothing wrong with seeking out extra support when you need it. In fact, therapy and coaching are for people who have enough self-awareness to realize they need a helping hand, and that is something to be admired. You are taking responsibility by accepting where you are at in life and making a commitment to change the situation by seeking help when you may feel "stuck," overwhelmed, volnerable, or just out of balance in your life. Therapy and coaching provide long-lasting benefits and support, giving you the tools you need to avoid triggers, re-direct damaging patterns, and overcome whatever challenges you may be facing right now.
Why do people go to therapy and coaching and how do I know if it is right for me?
People have many different motivations for coming to therapy or coaching. Some may be going through a major life transition (unemployment, divorce, grief, etc.), or they are not handling stressful circumstances well. Some people need assistance managing a range of other issues such as low self-esteem, depression, anxiety, relationship problems, spiritual conflicts,creative blocks, or life balance challenges. Therapy/coaching can help provide some much needed encouragement and help with skills to get through these periods. Others may be at a point where they are ready to learn more about themselves or want to be more effective with their goals in life. In short, people seeking therapy/coaching are ready to meet challenges in their life, and they are ready to make changes in their life.
What is therapy and coaching like?
Because each person has different issues and goals when they seek services, therapy and coaching will be different depending on the individual. In general, you can expect to discuss the current events happening in your life, your personal history relevant to your issue, and report progress (or any new insights gained) from the previous session. Depending on your specific needs, therapy and coaching can be short-term, for a specific issue, or longer-term, to deal with more difficult patterns or your desire for more personal development. Either way, it is most common to schedule regular sessions (usually weekly to biweekly) with your therapist in the beginning. As goals for treatment are met, you may need services less frequently and eventually, not at all.
It is important to understand that you will get more results from therapy if you actively participate in the process. The ultimate purpose of therapy and coaching is to help you bring what you learn in session back into your life. Therefore, beyond the work you do in therapy sessions, your therapist/coach may suggest some things you can do outside of session to support your process - such as reading a pertinent book, journaling on specific topics, noting particular behaviors or taking action on your goals. People who seek therapy and coaching services are ready to make positive changes in their life, are open to new perspectives, and they take responsibility for their life.
What about medication vs. psychotherapy?
It is well established that the long-term solution to mental and emotional problems and the pain they cause cannot be solved solely by medication alone. While medication can sometimes provide relief from emotional and physical symptoms, therapy works to address the cause of distress and the behavior patterns that can limit your progress. You can best achieve sustainable growth and a greater sense of well-being with an integrative approach to wellness. Working with your medical doctor you can determine what's best for you, and in some cases a combination of medication and therapy is the right course of action.
Does what we talk about in therapy remain confidential?
Confidentiality is one of the most important components between a client and therapist. Successful therapy requires a high degree of trust with highly sensitive subject matter that is not discussed anywhere but the therapist's office. Every therapist should provide a written copy of their confidential disclosure agreement, and you can expect that what you discuss in session will not be shared with anyone. This is called “Informed Consent”. Sometimes, however, you may want your therapist to share information or give an update to someone on your healthcare team (your Physician, Psychiatrist, Attorney), but by law your therapist cannot release this information without obtaining your written permission.
However, state law and professional ethics require therapists to maintain confidentiality except for the following situations:
* Suspected past or present abuse or neglect of children, adults, and elders to the authorities, including Child Protection and law enforcement, based on information provided by the client or collateral sources.
* If the therapist has reason to suspect the client is seriously in danger of harming him/herself or has threated to harm another person.