Life is a project; your resources, struggles and goals are central in a warm and straightforward atmosphere in relaxed, comfortable surroundings. Therapy begins with three assessment sessions where both you and I have the opportunity to evaluate the nature of your problems and to develop a potentially fruitful climate of co-operation within which we can solve them. As well as personal chemistry the appropriateness of the methods I use is important to evaluate in relation to your problems. When we have reached agreement about the focus of therapy an estimated time frame is developed, which can be from three sessions to a year’s therapy. During long therapy processes breaks and holidays can occur. Shorter therapy processes will focus more on finding solutions and less on examining the past.
Once therapy gets going it is natural that a certain idealisation of the therapist can occur because the client feels heard by an empathic and open person. When the first enthusiasm (which can feel like being in love) has faded one can feel resistance and desire to skip therapy sessions.
This phenomenon is classically known as transference where the anger and disappointment one has experienced in important relations, for example in relation to ones parents, re-emerge and are re-experienced in relation to the therapist who becomes a kind of stand in for other significant people. Resistance can be so strong that one can desire to stop the therapy and lose faith in the therapist’s ability to help one. Together we can analyse these feelings and reactions and this leads us on to the phase in therapy where the real therapeutic work goes on through which you can develop the capacity to break early patterns of behaviour and work constructively towards the future. Some clients wish for a break before returning to the therapeutic process which can be good for the process as it gives the possibility for deepening and anchoring the therapeutic relationship.
In the case of holidays and the end of therapy you will be warned well in advance so as not to become surprised and so that we can pause or close the therapy in a meaningful and sensitive way. Towards the end the integration of what we have worked on is an important part of the process which I give great significance.