What Is Psychotherapy?

Psychotherapy, or therapy for short, is the opportunity to talk your problems over on a regular—typically weekly—basis with a mental health professional like me. So, you could call it talk therapy, as opposed to medication therapy or any other kind of treatment.

It’s like talking to a friend or family member who . . .

  • happens to be a great listener who stays focused on you, letting you expand on things without ever taking the conversation off in their own direction.
  • has no agenda other than to help you thrive and be happy.
  • has expertise in the areas you’re struggling with.
  • who will support you and give you the benefit of the doubt but also knows when to challenge you if you’re being shortsighted.

Talking to a psychotherapist can help because . . .

  • when you share your woes, you’ll often find that pain shared is pain halved—or less!
  • just the act of explaining things out loud can help you see new solutions.
  • a therapist can help you understand how you perceive the world and how you feel about people and things.
  • a therapist can help you understand the stresses in your life and build better coping skills.
  • ultimately a therapist can help you grow, make better choices, and make progress in life.

What is it good for?

  • Tough life choices, complicated relationships, and problematic feelings like anxiety, depression, and anger.

Does it work?

  • Many people find it helpful as shown by a number of well-designed studies or just by asking a few friends.
  • Therapy may be right for you, if you’re someone who is willing to talk, open up, and learn things about yourself.

How can I get the most out of it?

  • Before each session, think of some topics and examples to explore that day. Set the agenda and be prepared to talk.
  • During each session, try to loosen up, follow your feelings and freely share the spontaneous thoughts that come up. That’s how we can access what is most deep and true about you.
  • Make sure to put what you learn into practice between appointments.
  • You’ll be amazed by how much you can learn and grow!

–Dr. Adam