Marion Haftel M. Ed, LMHC, LPC, NCC.
I have had people walk into my office and say to me, “You know, I don’t believe in this therapy stuff”. I laugh and say, “Great! Belief is not required!” Then a few sessions later, a person who came in reluctantly, referred by their doctor or a family member, will thank me for all my help.
So how does therapy or counseling work? First we figure out the factors that are causing the distress. Sometimes this is obvious. Sometimes not so much. Then you, the client will tell me how you will know things are better. If you don’t know, we will figure that out together. Then we come up with a plan to get there, and Do the Plan.
Like most counselors and therapists these days, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is an important tool in my toolbox. Simply put, this means we figure out the beliefs that contribute to your distress. Beliefs generate thoughts that create feelings and actions. Change the belief, change the result! But beliefs are TRUE! Not necessarily. We get taught beliefs by family, friends, and society and gather evidence that makes them true. There are brain structures and processes that actually aid this along. It is meant to ensure survival. In the modern world it sometimes works against us. “We are all affected by gravity” is a fact. “I must be perfect” is an example of an unhealthy belief that many people carry. While doing ones best is a good thing, demanding perfection of one’s self is a sure path to misery.
By getting to know you and focusing on your goals, a great therapist can ferret out unhealthy beliefs you hold that you may be unaware of. Sometimes simply bringing them to the light is enough to evoke changes for people. Sometimes simply making a plan to do something different, doing it and experiencing the pleasure of accomplishment is what we do together. We get results and it is awesome! Sometimes beliefs are stubborn. That is where additional processes, like EFT, are really helpful in rooting out and releasing the energetic ties that bind you more quickly and simply that anyone could imagine: freeing you to experience a more fulfilling and happier life.
This melding of cognitive behavioral therapy, looking at the family system when necessary and getting what you learn with your mind down into your heart so you can make changes that benefit you and your loved ones is how
I can help you step towards that more fulfilling life and keep going in your new and better direction.