Frequently Asked Questions
What is the difference between counselling, psychotherapy and analysis?What happens at the initial consultation? What happens in a regular session? Is it just about exploring your childhood?How long will it take?Working arrangements? (e.g. days, times, frequency, payment, confidentiality, ethics) What is the next step?
What is the difference between counselling, psychotherapy and analysis?
In everyday conversation 'counselling' is often used as a ‘catch all’ phrase, like ‘therapy’ to refer to any kind of psychological help. More specifically, the term ‘counselling’ generally refers to shorter-term work focusing upon a specific difficulty whereas ‘psychotherapy’ & ‘analysis’ both refer to ongoing, longer term, in-depth work e.g. addressing longstanding problems or repeating patterns of troublesome relationships. Analysis generally entails more intensive work than psychotherapy and facilitates deep change. Sometimes the differences between ‘counselling’, ‘psychotherapy’ and ‘analysis’ is explained as being on a continuum or scale.
See more:- Types of help.
What happens at the initial consultation?
This is an opportunity to meet and find out what has brought you to seek therapy and perhaps share a little about your concerns and background. Towards the end of the session there will be an opportunity to ask any questions you may have about the way in which I work, .... as well as to consider a way forward.
If we both decide to go ahead we will make an initial agreement as to how often you will come each week, fees, nature of the commitment and absences, however these discussions do not need to be rushed and where appropriate can be continued in further exploratory meeting(s).
If we decide not to work together, we can consider other avenues that you might helpfully explore.
What happens in a regular session?
Confucius, The Analects
Sometimes you may come to a session with a clear idea of what you want to talk about. At other times you may arrive believing you have nothing to say and it can be surprising, uncomfortable and enlightening to wait and discover what emerges in the silence.
Either way it usually helps to talk as freely as possible about whatever is uppermost in your mind as it occurs to you; these may be worries, hopes, fears, stray thoughts, memories, images or ideas. It also helps to talk about dreams, day dreams, ways in which you find yourself behaving that surprise you; these all provide glimpses of your unconscious life. It can also be valuable to share how you experience the process of being in therapy and the therapeutic relationship.
See more:-In the session
Is psychotherapy and analysis just about exploring your childhood?
“People often find themselves thinking about their childhood, sooner or later, when they let their thoughts flow freely, as childhood is a formative time. However that certainly isn’t the essential point of psychotherapy. The most important issues concern what is happening now in your mental life, consciously and unconsciously and in your relationships. So the present and the future are far more important than the past for past’s sake. However, often, childhood still has such a hold on people they keep wasting the present.”
How long will it take?
This will depend upon what has brought you to seek therapy and what you are hoping to achieve. Some people seek time-limited focussed work (counselling) for a specific problem. Others want to make deeper changes needing longer term work; sometimes several sessions a week.
Psychotherapy / Jungian Analysis is not a quick fix; it entails in-depth work and is seeking to understand complex emotional issues and patterns of behaviour / ways of seeing the world that have been established over the years. It is an investment in yourself. The nature of this commitment can be discussed more fully at your initial consultation.
Confucius, Sayings of Confucius
How long are sessions?
Are the sessions confidential?
Yes, unless there is grave risk of harm to yourself or others. This can be explored at the initial consultation.
Please see my Privacy Notice
Do you have a clear code of ethics?
Yes, I abide by the rigorous code of ethics of my registering body the BPC.
How much does it cost?
The fee for the initial consultation and the standard fee per session is currently £65. Consideration of a reduced fee can be explored (where appropriate) in the initial or subsequent sessions; this is usually for more frequent work.
How do I pay?
I will give you an account at the end of each month. Most people pay by bank transfer.
Do you charge for missed sessions?
Yes, when we enter into an agreement to work together I set aside specific time slot(s) for your sessions and in consequence any missed, failed or cancelled sessions are charged at the full rate. This can be discussed at the initial consulation.
What frequency of sessions is appropriate?
This will arise from a careful exploration of what has brought you to seek psychotherapy and analysis, what you are hoping to achieve and your personal context. I work with individuals at a frequency of one, two, three or more sessions per week; many individuals begin psychotherapy at a frequency of one or two sessions per week.
Do you offer time-limited counselling, once per week work?
Yes, where desired and appropriate. Many people however prefer to work on an open-ended basis. This can be discussed at the initial consultation.
What is the next step?
Please check my current availability before contacting me to arrange an initial appointment where we can discuss your concerns and explore the possibility of psychotherapy or Jungian analysis.
Please view my Privacy Notice
Images on this page
Image 1: Crummock Water: from High Stile, Lake District: © J.A.Norton 2015
Image 2: Consulting room: Lynda Norton:Psychotherapy & Jungian Analysis in Welwyn Garden City, Hatfield & Hertford: © Lynda Norton 2015
Image 3: "The Tree of Life," Painting from Shake Khan Palace, Azerbaijan. National Art Museum, Usta Gambar Garabaji. Image in the public domain: Wikimedia Commons.