Alain de Botton’s Guide to Psychotherapy
Alain de Botton, author and respected philosopher, has produced this great 3 minute guide to psychotherapy. It also applies to counselling, but I'll use the term ‘psychotherapy' to cover both like he does.
I find it explains the process of psychotherapy really well, and can give you an idea of what to expect as well as why it might be helpful for you.
Some key points
He raises some key points about psychotherapy. Firstly, psychotherapy is suitable for people with the normal problems with living, because it concerns the normal problems of existing. This addresses something that many feel – that because they don't think of themselves as having anxiety or depression, counselling isn't relevant. Secondly, psychotherapists are trained to accept, understand and help you in a way that your friends may not be. It's certainly something I hear from people; that friends and family are too close to the problem and often can be invested in people making changes. Lastly, psychotherapists work to help you grasp the thing that can so often elude us – self-understanding. There's a paradox here; we think that we understand ourselves – until we realise that we don't don't.
One other thing – in the video, the character lies on a couch. I don't ask my clients to do that. We face each other, just like in a normal conversation.
Please let me know what you think of the video in the comments.