Matthew HarwoodJungian Analysis, Psychotherapy, Internal Family Systems
‘People say that what we’re all seeking is a meaning for life. I don’t think that’s what we’re really seeking. I think that what we’re seeking is an experience of being alive….’ (Joseph Campbell)
What’s the difference between Psychotherapy, Counselling and Analysis?
Psychotherapy provides a safe and confidential setting in which to explore thoughts, worries, feelings, memories, dreams and fantasies.
- Help you gain greater insight and understanding into your thoughts and feelings.
- Provide new perspectives on your situation which allow you to have a greater range of choice and possibilities in your life.
- Help you to find a way through the difficulties of life – especially the places where you are stuck.
- Provide support during difficult periods in life, such as a bereavement, or relationship difficulties.
- Help you sort out your priorities and make clear choices about the future.
- Support you in facing with difficult feelings.
The overall aim is to understand the unconscious origin of our difficulties – and how these difficulties repeat themselves in our relationships, and in the events of our life in the ‘here and now.’
Counselling tends to be shorter-term, restricts itself to one or two clearly defined issues, and is more solution-focused.
An analyst is a psychotherapist who has done a particularly intensive form of long-term training with one of the training bodies authorised to confer the title of ‘analyst’. In particular a classically-trained Jungian Analyst is trained to use dream interpretation and other tools in order to to help the client journey to the deepest regions of the unconscious. As always, the emphasis is upon helping you to find your own answers within a safe and accepting environment.
In practice, the division between analysis, psychotherapy and counselling is not quite as clear-cut as it sounds. Each one tends to overlap with the others. There are many counsellors who work as deeply as psychotherapists; and there are many psychotherapists who work as deeply as analysts. It all depends upon how far the particular therapist has travelled in his/her own individual journey.
In most cases, short-term work, focused on specific issues, tends to be a mixture of counselling & psychotherapy. Longer-term work is likely to be a mixture of counselling, psychotherapy & analysis.
Finally, it may be helpful to realise that, for reasons of convenience, many practitioners tend use the word ‘psychotherapy’ as a collective umbrella term to cover all 3 methods of working. This practice may be confusing but, in the absence of any better umbrella term, it is bound to continue.