The right therapist is more important than the technique
If you find yourself confused about which therapy is which, it’s quite understandable! There are different names for the various therapies which involve talking to the practitioner – and could really be best referred to as ‘talking therapy’. Almost all talking therapies involve helping you to discover and use your own resources to resolve your issues in the most effective way possible.
‘Counselling’ is traditionally more about listening and guiding you to work out your current experience of life. ‘Psychotherapy’ often entails working out your past and is generally more in-depth.
Here a a few more ‘talking therapies’:
CBT (Conscious Behaviour Therapy): One of the better-known, this is designed to help you observe your own thinking and change the way you view your thoughts.
Meridian or Energy Therapies: Not really counselling, but often used by therapists to release stuck emotions or beliefs. Also referred to as EFT, Tapping, TFT, and some times used by Kinesiologists – all involve working with acupuncture points.
Solution Focussed Therapy: As the name implies, this seeks the solution for the problem rather than working with the cause. Many coaches use this approach.
Client-centered: Most therapies are client-centered, meaning that the therapy is desiged around your personality – all therapists should be client centered!
EMDR: This stands for ‘Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprogramming’ and is excellent for working with trauma. Personally I combine it with EFT and Emo-trance.
Emo-Trance: The therapist helps you to work with the emotion rather than fight against it. This allows a space for healing at an unconscious level. I use Emo-trance combined with EFT.
Hypnotherapy: Strictly not psychotherapy, though many psychotherapists and counsellors use it effectively. (Read more here)
NLP: As with Hypnotherapy, a tool used by many psychotherapists and coaches, the unconscious mind is engaged to bring about a change in thinking and ways of relating. NLP was developed from hypnotherapy techniques but usually do not require a trance state.
Holistic / Transpersonal: Working with the whole person. (Read more here)
There are many other types – don’t be fooled by new names for the same old stuff. Be weary of anybody claiming a ‘new’ and ‘unique’ therapy because in reality the underlying principles are usually very similar to those mentioned above.
Most practitioners are not skilled in every single one of those methods listed here (and there are actually a lot more besides) but will usually have more than one working method available to them.
Look for a practitioner that has experience, has worked through their own issues in life, and you feel comfortable with. Ultimately, it is absolutely essential that you feel at ease and confident with your therapist/counsellor if you are to get the results you seek.
It’s not the technique that counts most! Nor is it the amount of qualifications or even years in practice (although that is important!). How you get along with the therapist is fundamental to your getting the help you need! Find a therapist you like and trust!