People seek therapy for a variety of reasons – often combinations of mood changes like depression, anxiety or doubts about ourselves, physical symptoms related to stress or problems in making and maintaining relationships.
These difficulties can be associated with the ways we learned to live our lives, negotiate relationships and deal with day-to-day problems during our early years. They may also be related to recent illness, loss or other events in our lives which have changed the way we see our situation.
What is psychodynamic therapy or counselling?
Psychodynamic therapy understands problems as a result of a link between present and past events or relationships. Sometimes difficult feelings associated with these events have to be pushed out of awareness in order to manage life.
Even though you may only have vague memories of these past experiences, this can cause problems in your current life.
Symptoms such as depression, anxiety, self-harm or relationship problems can be understood as signs of these processes.
We may repeat past patterns of experience over and over again. By becoming more aware of the problems and their sources, you can begin to learn different ways of dealing with these feelings.
Therapy is aimed at helping you to talk about your present problems and help you make sense of them by becoming more aware of the processes behind them. As your therapist, I will help you to look at the links between present and past experiences.
What to expect in therapy
A psychodynamic therapy session is not like a normal conversation. The therapist takes on an enabling role, offering suggestions about the meaning of an event without giving concrete advice.
The sessions may seem to have no special structure. You will be asked to talk about the things that are troubling you at the time. In just the same way as past problems may be repeated in current relationships, they will also tend to be seen in your relationship with the therapist. In the safety of the professional relationship, these patterns can be understood and dealt with.
At assessment, I will explain to you my way of working and you will be invited to give me a first description of your problems.Depending on your needs, a plan for the length of treatment will be worked out at your assessment. We may decide for a fairly brief treatment period of 3 or 4 sessions, for other treatment may last several months.
Sessions last 50 minutes and take place regularly once a week at the same time.
Possible results of therapy
Benefits vary from person to person but clinical experience suggests that psychodynamic therapy is likely to be helpful in making problems clearer and helping you to understand and resolve them better. Research has shown that it is effective for a range of problems and the benefits last even when treatment has ended.
Looking at painful feelings is a central part of psychodynamic therapy. This is bound to be uncomfortable at times and I would encourage you to express these feelings openly. This is an important part of making progress.
Jasmin has worked with people with a wide variety of problems including depression, anxiety, self-harm, family and relationship problems, domestic abuse, sexual abuse history, bereavement, low self-esteem, work-related stress and social isolation.
Jasmin also has a special interest in working with clients that have psychosomatic complaints.
Jasmin holds a Master of Studies in Psychodynamic Practice from Oxford University. She has experience of working short- and long-term with adult clients in various NHS settings.
Jasmin is a registered member of BACP.