The word "psychotherapy"
is misused and misunderstood by most people. To make matters worse, untrained and unqualified
people are increasingly offering and charging large sums of money claiming
to provide counseling, therapy or some form of analysis. The public who use these services can end up confused, discouraged and
feeling misled. Many
conclude that psychotherapy doesn't work. But in reality, they never got
real help to begin with.
are nearly two hundred forms and techniques used in psychotherapy. These techniques, in the
hands of a qualified, ethical and caring person, can be tremendously
key to finding a good psychotherapist is to look for an individual who is
caring, credible and giving. That means they need to be be accessible and
available. It is the relationship that heals and the
techniques are not helpful if a therapist is unkind and uncaring.
Presentation on the Factors that
Create Change in People
(based on 40 years of research)
There are four factor that create and
bring about change in people. The following is a presentation with diagrams
and descriptions of these factors
What is Psychotherapy?
Psychotherapy is an activity that
involves the examination
of behavior and it requires work to solve
problems. A behavior is anything we do. It can be any action, what you are thinking,
what you say, a
memory, a sensation or an emotion. Work is the redirection of anything we do
that requires some degree of effort. This includes changing any behavior
or the continuance of a behavior against other tendencies, habits or usual
Psychotherapy and counseling
have a great deal in common, but counseling is not psychotherapy. Counseling
usually results in a realization, a plan or a decision. A therapist provides
or helps you create an "environment filled with activities" that bring about change �
almost like physical exercise.
What are the Underlying Principles Used in
There are hundreds of methods used to achieve the goals of
psychotherapy. These methods are based on observation, research and theories
that explain, predict or influence a change in our behavior. There are only a few underlying
principles in psychotherapy.
New awareness and insight changes our experience,
response tendencies and choices.
Practicing new behaviors will change
New experiences can motivate
us to take action, change and
Adults, and especially
children, tend to adopt behaviors of the people they bond with.
Advice, directions and techniques are
not nearly as important as the therapeutic relationship and the
resources that the person brings into therapy (See
factors that create change)
Hope, the desire to change and the
expectation that change will happen are essential but not that powerful
What are the Types of Psychotherapy?
How do Therapists Approach Psychotherapy?
Examination of the past and early childhood experience.
Changing present behavior
a strategic manner.
Identifying and expressing
your potential, your strengths and virtues.
Creating new experiences that
response tendencies and choices.
Problems That Respond
Well to Psychotherapy
and Avoidance. Most of the problems faced in psychotherapy are the
result of an unpleasant experience that causes people to change
their behavior in order to escape or avoid that experience or the memory
of that experience. The changes that occur in our behavior over time can
be limiting and cause problems. Living to avoid and escape is not the
same as living, loving and learning.
Behavior That Has a "Payoff". While most behavioral
problems are unpleasant or ineffective, they may have a payoff (or
person may not recognize the payoff and they may honestly deny there is a payoff.
Payoffs might include attention, extra care, emotional support or
avoidance of something unpleasant. The
payoff may not be noticeable or easily understood by family, friends and
of Awareness or Insight. Many problems are the result of an ability
to recognize the patterns, choices and the consequences of our behavior. In
order to solve a problem, it must be understood in a way that creates a
solution or allows us to change our behavior. We cannot make a
choice unless we understand that there is a choice, when there is a
choice and what choice to make.
Human Differences. Many people do not recognize or fully
appreciate the differences that exist between men and women as well as individuals and groups of individuals. These differences can lead to the
wrong assumptions and unrealistic expectations. Decisions and actions
that are then taken based on these false assumptions and unrealistic
expectation can cause problems. Learning to understand, respect and
respond appropriately in the case of human differences is a principle
solution to human suffering.
in Thinking. What we experience and the conclusions we make, can
affect our choices, our behavior and how we respond in the future.
Careful examination and correction of the way in which we think and the
conclusion we make can be helpful. There are many actions that we take
that are based on beliefs, assumption and thought processes that we have
not examined and do not recognize.
to Express our Identity or Potential. We are each born with a potential waiting to
unfold, be experienced and to be expressed. The inability to recognize and
express our potential can cause problems and especially symptoms of
depression. We each have an intuitive
recognition of when we are or are not using our abilities and potential. This applies to all aspect of our potential behavior.
For example, most of us recognize that some children love to run, talk, create or explore the
world. They have preferences and gifts. Problems surface when our deepest potentials are ignored, go
unrecognized or are suppressed.