EACH CLIENT IS UNIQUE! Therapy is a process. A carefully selected and solid approach, as well as a trusting counseling relationship, is key for helping clients grow!
There are many different and unique types of therapies, theories, techniques and counseling approaches. From time to time, clients like to know more specifically the differences between one type of counseling and another. It is important to understand the “process” of therapy – which involves growth, healing, awareness, and discovery. Below, you will find a few types of therapy and a brief description of each.
PSYCHOTHERAPY is the treatment of mental or emotional disorders and adjustment problems through the use of psychological techniques rather than through physical or biological means.
PERSON-CENTERED THERAPY, which is also known as client-centered, non-directive, or Rogerian therapy, is an approach to counseling and psychotherapy that places much of the responsibility for the treatment process on the client, with the therapist taking a non-directive role. Two primary goals of person-centered therapy are increased self-esteem and greater openness to experience.
COGNITIVE THERAPY is a psychosocial (both psychological and social) therapy that assumes that faulty thought patterns (called cognitive patterns) cause maladaptive behavior and emotional responses. The treatment focuses on changing thoughts in order to solve psychological and personality problems.
BEHAVIOR THERAPY is also a goal-oriented, therapeutic approach, and it treats emotional and behavioral disorders as maladaptive learned responses that can be replaced by healthier ones with appropriate training.
COGNITIVE-BEHAVIORAL THERAPY (CBT) integrates features of behavior modification into the traditional cognitive restructuring approach.
DIALECTICAL BEHAVIORAL THERAPY (DBT) is a cognitive-behavioral technique that focuses on giving the client self-confidence and coping tools for life outside of treatment through a combination of social skill training, mood awareness, meditative exercises, and education on their situation or problem.
FAMILY THERAPY is a form of psychotherapy that involves all the members of a nuclear or extended family. Although some types of family therapy are based on behavioral or psychodynamic principles, the most widespread form is based on Family Systems Theory, an approach that regards the entire family as the unit of treatment, and emphasizes such factors as relationships and communication patterns rather than traits or symptoms in individual members.
SOLUTION-FOCUSED BRIEF THERAPY (SFBT) focuses on what clients want to achieve through therapy rather than on the problem(s) that made them seek help. The approach does not focus on the past, but instead, focuses on the present and future. The therapist uses respectful curiosity to invite the client to envision their preferred future and then therapist and client start attending to any moves towards it whether these are small increments or large changes. To support this, questions are asked about the client’s story, strengths and resources, and about exceptions to the problem.
MINDFULNESS THERAPY focuses on one’s awareness on the present moment, while calmly acknowledging and accepting one’s feelings, thoughts, and bodily sensations, used as a therapeutic technique. Mindfulness is the quality or state of being conscious or aware of something.
ACCEPTANCE & COMMITMENT THERAPY (ACT) is not about eliminating difficult emotions, but rather the challenge to be present with what life brings us and to move forward using healthy behaviors. It invites people to open up to unpleasant feelings & experiences, learn not to overreact to them, and not avoid situations when they are invoked.
CLINICAL HYPNOTHERAPY is an altered state of awareness, perception or consciousness that is used, by licensed and trained doctors or masters prepared individuals, for treating a psychological or physical problem. It is a highly relaxed state. Hypnosis is a state of inner absorption, concentration and focused attention. It is like using a magnifying glass to focus the rays of the sun and make them more powerful. Similarly, when our minds are concentrated and focused, we are able to use our minds more powerfully. Because hypnosis allows people to use more of their potential, learning self-hypnosis is the ultimate act of self-control.
PLAY THERAPY refers to a method of psychotherapy with children in which a therapist uses a child’s fantasies and the symbolic meanings of his or her play as a medium for understanding and communication with the child. The aim of play therapy is to decrease those behavioral and emotional difficulties that interfere significantly with a child’s normal functioning. Inherent in this aim is improved communication and understanding between the child and his parents. Less obvious goals include improved verbal expression, ability for self-observation, improved impulse control, more adaptive ways of coping with anxiety and frustration, and improved capacity to trust and to relate to others.
FILIAL THERAPY involves play therapy techniques, but includes the parents and/or caregivers in play activities.
ART THERAPY is a form of psychotherapy involving the encouragement of free self-expression through painting, drawing, or modeling. It can be used with clients of all ages as a remedial activity or an aid to diagnosis.