The process of effective therapy requires a space of safety and protection.
You typically sit across from a therapist at your most vulnerable opening up about what is truly painful and unbearable.
Do you trust this therapist will not judge or condemn you? Will you wonder if they understand your experience and have the ability to help you solve the problems at the center of your pain?
An effective therapist has to successfully create and hold this safe and non-threatening space while exploring alongside you without judgment. Therapy is at its best when it is truly collaborative. You are the expert of your own life. The therapist assists you in the process of self-discovery and change. Goals for therapy are identified and a capable therapist helps you to accomplish them.
Some examples of possible goals are learning new skills to communicate more effectively with your partner in order to reduce conflict. The following session we would determine how it went for you and if anything got in the way of the desired outcome. Often, strong emotions interfere with our ability to successfully communicate the intended message so in that session we would work on techniques that can help manage your emotions better and put you in charge of them instead of them controlling you.
The focus of any session is whatever the priority is for your life at that time. Goals for the session can change depending on what is most important to you and what will better serve your overall growth and progress.