Common myths and misconceptions about therapy

Many people still believe that individual therapy and counseling is handled in a tiny room, where the patient lies on a leather couch, while the psychiatrist sits high on a chair, taking notes, asking a bunch of questions with the goal of digging up childhood issues that are the cause of the problem.  Of course this is far from what most therapy or counseling sessions truly is … but these misconceptions and myths still linger.

Here are a few more myths about therapy:

    • Therapy is only for people with “serious mental issues”.
    • People that go to therapy are crazy.
    • Therapy or counseling is just common sense.
  • individual therapy services mn

    • Therapy is just glorified ‘self-help”
    • Therapy is a sign of weakness
    • Therapy is expensive
    • Medication is just as good as therapy
    • Therapy will make me worse

What is individual therapy?

Individual therapy is also referred too or known as counseling, therapy or psychotherapy. In individual therapy you meet one-on-one with a therapist/clinician.  There are many different types of therapy and approaches that … and your therapist or clinician may use a single-treatment approach, or combine several different types.

Maybe you are feeling depressed or anxious, or maybe you need help dealing with a painful experience or trouble at home with a spouse or family member.  Perhaps you do not necessarily have a mental health issue to deal with, but simply need assistance with self-esteem, or a personal growth issue.  Individual therapy provides a one-on-one safe and supportive place for you to explore your feelings, behaviors, habits, and thoughts so you can get your life back!

When specific emotional and psychological issues begin to cause you problems and interfere with you or your loved one’s normal life, the time may be right to seek therapy or counseling.

  • How individual therapy works?

    Individual therapy begins with an initial consultation, where our clinicians and therapist will talk with you or your loved one about any problem areas, such as symptoms of anxiety or depression, your family situation, your childhood history if appropriate, or any other relevant issues or problems.

    In individual therapy, our therapists at MidWest Center will use a variety of approaches, including cognitive-behavior therapy, interpersonal therapy, and emotional-focused counseling … depending of course on your specific needs. Our therapist are actively involved to help you get a deeper understanding of your situation, provide emotional support, and work with you to create goals and a specific individual plan on how and when to work together.

  • Common stages of therapy:

    There are usually several stages or components for individual therapy, and even though the exact process will be personalized by the therapist and the client, here are a few of the common stages:

    1. Initial consultation
    2. Goals
    3. Exploration and assessment
    4. Working through problems
    5. Action steps
    6. Integration of new thought and behavior
    7. Follow-up

Goals, duration and frequency of individual therapy

The overall goal of individual therapy is to help you better understand your behaviors and emotions.  Many people choose therapy or counseling so they can resolve a specific issue or to help them cope with major life transitions and changes. Therapy can give you the insight into why you deal with things the way you do, and help identify other areas of your life where the problem may show up. Individual therapy will give you a non-judgmental and supportive environment for you to explore your behaviors and emotions, and at the same time offer you specific actions that will help you improve your life.

Typically each session in individual therapy lasts between 45-60 minutes, depending on the your situation and the clinicians/therapist you choose.

  • What can individual therapy help with?

    Individual therapy can help with just about any type of emotional or psychological problem, including:

    • Depression
    • Anxiety
    • Anger
    • Addiction
    • Trauma
    • Self-esteem
    • Grief and Loss
    • Parent-Child conflicts
    • Eating disorders
  • individual therapy for depression, anxiety and addictions

The client-therapist relationship

The single most important factor in a successful therapy is the relationship between the client and their therapist or clinician.  At MidWest Center for Personal & Family Development we view the experience as a collaboration where the clinician and client decide together what to work on, what the goals will be, and what actions to take.

Keep in mind that each client-therapist relationship is unique, and much of the success that occurs in individual therapy is a product of this unique relationship. Therefore it is critical that you are very comfortable with your therapist or counselor.

  • How do you choose the right therapist?

    Individual therapy can be a very effective treatment for mental, emotional and psychological problems. But in order for it to work, you have to be comfortable and confident in your relationship.  You need to choose someone who you can trust, someone you feel comfortable talking about difficult subjects, someone you feel good about sharing intimate details of your life

  • Therapy and counseling will not work unless you have a strong bond with your therapist, here are some questions you should consider before you commit:

    1. Do you feel you could be honest and open with this therapist?
    2. Do you feel comfortable, is this person easy to make small talk with?
    3. Does it feel like the counselor/therapist truly cares about you?
    4. What does your gut instinct tell you?
    5. Can the therapist or counselor clearly define how they can help you solve your problem?
    6. Does the therapist have experience helping others with your particular issue(s)?
    7. Do they seem like good listeners?
    8. Do you feel like the therapist understands you?

MidWest Center for Personal and Family Development has a multidisciplinary staff made up of Psychologists, Social Workers, Therapists and Counselors who are highly trained in over 100 mental health issues. You can choose from 4 different locations in the Twin Cities locations, and our main focus is to connect you with a therapist that matches you or your loved one’s needs.

We take a collaborative approach to your care, and our clinicians work together and consider all influences in your life that will help determine if you would benefit from individual therapy, relationship or couple counseling, parenting consultation, or family therapy.