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What Are the Benefits of Psychotherapy?

Updated: May 26



A woman talking to her therapist virtually

You may have learned about psychotherapy and what is more commonly called therapy through various forms of media including social media, film, tv shows, alongside anecdotal stories about your friends' and families' experiences with therapy.


You may be curious about beginning to explore therapy yourself but opening up to a new person about what is most private to you can feel naturally a bit daunting.


I would like to share with you some of the benefits of psychotherapy in this blog post so that you are empowered with more information about what you can expect from therapy, and the possible benefits that accompany therapy.


Greater Attachment Security

When you develop a secure attachment style, you are able to appreciate your own self-worth and are able to be your authentic self in an intimate relationship, alongside friendships. You become comfortable expressing your feelings, hopes, and needs.


Many who come to therapy experience high levels of anxiety in relationships, though how we respond to this anxiety may look different. For some, it means feeling anxious about how your partner regards you, and feeling uncertain that their care for you is enduring (This often leads us to seek reassurance from them). For others, you may seek connection but feel overwhelmed by emotional intimacy (This often leads to withdrawing).


Psychotherapy can support you in navigating your attachment hopes and fears, and to learn to relate to another in new and adaptive ways. This starts with your relationship with your therapist.


Self-Esteem that is Reliable and Resilient

Cultivating self-esteem that is based on an internal criteria that is neither perfectionistic nor inflated (and therefore feels "true" to you) allows for healthy self-evaluation. When this is coupled with reliable self-esteem, it allows us to take in negative feedback without experiencing feelings of shame, and to take in compliments without it becoming something we depend upon solely for our self-esteem.


Healthy self-esteem can be built in adulthood when we begin to explore our authentic thoughts, feelings, and behaviours with curiosity and self-compassion. Psychotherapy can allow us to notice what is worthy and good within us, to acknowledge our humanness including our flaws, and to work toward personal acceptance and growth in the company of a supportive other.


Warmly,


Hannah Peirce


References

  1. Psychoanalytic Supervision, Chapter 3, Nancy McWilliams

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