Although there are many approaches to psychotherapy, one of the most consistent findings in the research literature on psychotherapy is the positive relationship between the therapeutic alliance and treatment outcome. In other words, the stronger the therapeutic relationship between the therapist and patient, the more likely the patient will benefit from treatment.
Most of the problems people present with in therapy are the result of difficulties or trauma in relationship to others, either past or present. Psychotherapy and the therapeutic conversation pays attention to what happens – or doesn’t happen – between people and how these interactions either maintain the status quo and increase suffering and alienation, or allow for new experiences and opportunities. Through this process, psychotherapy can facilitate corrective emotional experiences by “re-searching” what has happened in the patient’s life and what is currently happening in the therapy relationship.
My approach to psychotherapy focuses on the role of the therapeutic relationship to explore painful experiences – including thoughts, feelings and behaviours – to facilitate healing and support authentic relating. In my opinion, one of the most important criteria in selecting a psychotherapist is whether you feel comfortable and safe in their presence, and whether they are flexible, trustworthy and reliable. By creating a safe and compassionate environment, patients can risk showing themselves and remember what was lost or injured in their lives and try to regain their humanity.