What is Psychodynamic Psychotherapy & Counselling?

The principle upon which Psychodynamic Psychotherapy rests focuses on how the past can influence how we behave in the present. The Psychodynamic approach will focus on existing thoughts, feelings and memories and follow the thread which associates them to previous situations or relationships. A deeper understanding is gained through the analysis of the individual’s thoughts, feelings, dreams, images and memories. Psychodynamic Psychotherapy looks at and addresses how you are in your relationship with both yourself and others.

What does Psychodynamic Therapy/Counselling look
like in practice?

Within Psychodynamic Psychotherapy strict boundaries around time- keeping, the therapeutic relationship, session duration and frequency and endings are highlighted. The focus on maintaining these boundaries is seen as crucial as it allows for the containment and holding of the client throughout the work. Transference reactions are seen as an underpinning aspect of this work and can bring to the fore important features about the client’s past experiences. These transferences are often triggered by the lack of self disclosure by the therapist. As a rule of thumb the client will know little or nothing about the therapist. Transference is seen as a really important aspect of Psychodynamic Psychotherapy and the therapist will work with these ‘transferences’ within the therapy. Transference is a process brought about when the client reacts to the therapist ‘as if’ they were a significant person from the client’s past. Transference is where aspects of relationships from the past come into present interactions. Transference can include both positive and negative feelings including, like, love, caring, concern, dislike or hate. Another aspect of this type of work is ‘Counter Transference’ which highlights the therapists reactions towards their clients.

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