Category Archives: Psychotherapy

Tools and techniques from psychological theory

Are you ready to graduate from therapy?

Looking back, you may remember how hard it was to decide to engage in therapy. It’s scary trusting a stranger with your stuff, never mind admitting that you have stuff! Well, ending therapy (also known as graduating from or terminating therapy) can be similarly challenging. Let’s see how you can evaluate whether you are ready to graduate, ending options, and common fears about termination. Continue reading Are you ready to graduate from therapy?

A spring clean for avoidance


Overflowing cupboards?

I am sure every household has it: The cupboard where things get shoved into while you hold the rest of the contents back with another arm before you close the door with your foot. At any moment this cupboard could swing open and spill it contents on the floor – or worse, fall all over you. Avoidance of the linen or Tupperware cupboard, perhaps?

Sometimes our memories can be like this. Uncontrollable, they spill out whenever they feel like it. Painful. Perhaps even shameful. It’s easy to succumb to the temptation to avoid these feared memories, but is it helpful?

Continue reading A spring clean for avoidance

What helps people change?

Some days I wish that I was a fairy godmother (or had a fairy godmother) who could swish a magic wand and take all the problems and suffering away. That would be so much easier than needing to undertake a process of personal change! If you have ever tried helping somebody going though a hard time you will be well aware that there are no magic wands. So what does help a person going through a change process?
Continue reading What helps people change?

Change is challenging

I have found this experiment very useful to explain the challenge in change:

Step 1. Cross your arms.

Step 2. Cross your arms in the opposite direction

Step 3. Reflect: Does it feel a bit uncomfortable?

For many it does! And if changing the way we cross our arms is uncomfortable, how much more so to change the way we eat, exercise, drink, smoke, talk, think…

The Transtheoretical model (Prochaska and colleagues) provides a helpful framework to conceptualize the PROCESS of change.

Continue reading Change is challenging