Being in therapy is a bit like doing a very big jigsaw puzzle. The pieces are yours, but although you do not have a clear idea of the picture that the puzzle makes, I believe that you know what it is or what you want it to be. You certainly know more about this than I do. What I know is how jigsaw puzzles sometimes fit together and where the pieces are likely to connect. So what we do here is a cooperative effort, where we look at the pieces and see how they may fit together, except the pieces are your thoughts and feelings about what you hope and fear and desire.
– Emmy van Deurzen
Counselling is about exploring alternatives, finding new meanings and new ways of looking at things. It is about finding solutions and ways to feel more complete and satisfied in life. Through therapy it is possible to identify your resources, to build on them and to begin to work through your issues piece by piece, just like completing a jigsaw puzzle. By taking the time to sit with a counsellor and talk about your concerns, you can begin to make sense of where you are, where you want to be and how to go about getting there.
As a counsellor who endeavours to see things as much as possible from your perspective, I think of therapy as a process that adapts to respond to the needs of the people involved. This is the reason why I take into consideration not just one, but a variety of therapeutic approaches in the ways in which we might work together. Ways that take into consideration your personal history and your upbringing. Ways that explore your patterns of thinking and the effect that they may be having on the way that you feel. We could even look at some of the things that happen from moment to moment in our sessions together and think about what they could possibly mean.
Ultimately counselling is about building a relationship with your therapist where you can feel safe enough to be able to share some of your most personal concerns. It is about knowing that whatever you might bring to therapy will be treated confidentially and with respect and careful consideration. And that by talking through your problems you will eventually find the means to move forward, to live more purposefully and in the manner that suits you best.