Talking Treatments: What are they?

Talking treatments are a confidential, psychological method of working through and relieving emotional distress and helping people by listening to their problems. Helping them to change their thoughts, feelings, attitudes or behaviour patterns.

They work by providing you with an opportunity to explore issues with a trained, qualified professional, to gain a better understanding of yourself, and develop coping strategies in order that you can lead a more positive and happier lifestyle. All confidential and from a safe place, often from your own home or another safe place.

Talking treatments include counselling and life coaching and can be effective in treating most mental health problems such as depression and anxiety, in some cases counselling alone can help, for others a combination of talking treatments and medication may be the most effective combination.

Medication tends to work by treating a mental health problem using a chemical formula to regulate a person’s mood, whereas talking treatments, life coaching and counselling aim to address the underlying causes of the problem and therefore offer a more permanent solution, rather than a short-term numbing of feelings.

Counselling and life coaching is a lasting solution and a self-investment in a more positive and happier future.

A male therapist giving a talking therapy session.

When are Counselling and Talking Treatments suitable?

Psychological treatments can help you if you are experiencing anxiety, panic attacks, obsessions, phobias, depression and also other less serious illnesses. The aim is to explore, with the therapist’s help, possible origins of your problems and to gain understanding which may help you to overcome your issues.

In treating Schizophrenia, manic Depression or other major mental health problems, counselling can have a very valuable role in association with antipsychotic medication by helping to overcome some of the consequences of the illness, for example by improving social skills, or by coming to terms with things that cannot be changed.

A wide variety of talking treatments and counselling models are available, ranging from person-centred counselling and psychotherapy to cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT). These are explored in more detail follow.

Counselling (face-to-face or online)

Counselling from an experienced, qualified counsellor can help you make sense of your life and resolve specific problems. It can also help you to make Decisions, deal with mental health problems, such as depression and many other issues affecting your emotional and mental well-being.

Counselling is provided in a safe environment and the content of what you talk about should be kept confidential. The aim of the counsellor is to help you, and they can do this in many different ways. They may just listen, as speaking out loud about your problems can help you put your thoughts in order.

The counsellor will not tell you what to do, and you will be left to make your own choices. Some counsellors, however, may go through a whole list of options, and examine the pros and cons of each option, so that you can make informed decisions. Counselling is generally face-to-face, but can also take place over the telephone or via the internet, (Online Counselling).

Cognitive Behaviour Therapy

Cognitive Behaviour Therapy or (CBT) combines two very effective kinds of Psychotherapy — Cognitive Therapy and Behaviour Therapy.

Behaviour Therapy helps you weaken the connections between troublesome situations and your habitual reactions to them, such as fear, depression or rage, and self-defeating or self-damaging behaviour. It also teaches you how to calm your mind and body, so you can feel better, think more clearly, and make better decisions.

Cognitive Therapy Teaches you how certain thinking patterns are causing your symptoms by giving you a distorted picture of what’s going on in your life, and making you feel anxious, depressed or angry for no good reason, or provoking you into ill-chosen actions. When combined into CBT, behaviour therapy and cognitive therapy can provide you with very powerful tools for stopping your symptoms and getting your life on a more satisfying track.

Psychotherapy and Psychoanalysis

Psychotherapy and psychoanalysis are processes of discovery which aim to eliminate or control mental or emotional distress. They also can be used to help a person overcome a specific problem or to stimulate overall emotional wellbeing/growth and healing. In regularly scheduled sessions – usually 50 minutes in length, a person works with a therapist or counsellor to identify, learn to manage and, ultimately, overcome emotional and mental health problems. psychotherapy and psychoanalysis are active processes requiring concentration, energy, and commitment by both parties. You may agree a particular timescale for therapy with your therapist, or counsellor, for example 8 weeks, or the therapy may be open-ended and continue for several months.

I’m Paul Parkin – A therapist and life coach. This is why you should work with me:

Paul Parkin Online CounsellorIt is important that you feel comfortable with your counsellor, life coach or therapist, and that you feel able to develop an open, honest and trusting working relationship with them. Without this, no talking treatment or counselling is likely to be successful.

Online counselling with me offers you a safe space to explore your issues freely and comfortably while keeping your anonymity, as your details and who you are remains confidential.

What some of my recent clients have said about our work together.

I contacted Paul at the beginning of 2021 feeling pretty splintered about quite a few things. I wasn’t sure of where my life was headed, how to get anywhere and how to deal with the negative, catastrophizing, self-critical thoughts along the way.

I was down on myself because I’ve been sober for over 5 years and yet I felt as if my life had no direction and there were still many things that needed to be untangled and talked about.

Paul helped me think about what I’d like to accomplish in working with him and what I’d like to talk about. We looked at everything from childhood, relationship with parents, sexual relationships, intimacy and fetishes, along with addiction, work, career and character building. Paul had something helpful for me every step of the way whether it was breathing techniques, reading about the brain, processing the past or how to exist in the here and now and move forward. The biggest help Paul offered me was thinking about the future and how to walk towards it. Scheduling my life, dealing with my thoughts and feelings and even throwing out old socks with holes in them were all a part of my journey towards direction and sanity.

He was also extremely helpful in connecting to my girlfriend and getting closer with her. We hadn’t a great way of communicating before Paul recommended some pretty straight forward help in checking in with each other and making sure our needs are being met separately and together. It was actually some simple stuff to do, but it changed everything in the way we communicate to this day.

I feel as if today I still have a lot going on inside my head, but the difference between before I started with Paul and now is night and day. I know being present and looking forward is healthy for me and I know having a schedule to get there has made all the difference in my life. Paul has helped me get busy with the things that help me have a life and stay out of negative thinking, which is really my biggest problem when I get right down to it. Paul has helped me immensely in just a few months of good work together.

I would recommend Paul’s help to anyone looking to make some sense of their life and their relationships, trying to find direction, or simply have someone to bounce things off of for feedback. I believe he is top quality and I will continue to return to Paul for help, counseling, feedback and guidance as long as he is doing this work.

Thank you, Paul, for all that you do! Your friend.

Sean. USA.
July 2021.

After researching and contacting a couple of different therapists, I decided to go with Paul after discussing my requirements (primarily work on a severe phobia, and some self-esteem, anxiety and depression issues) as he came across as friendly, empathetic and knowledgeable.

His approach blended CBT and NLP techniques with some talking therapy, and he was kind and understanding throughout the whole process, always explaining why he was introducing certain actions and how they would help, and always reassuring me and reminding me how much progress I was making, which was invaluable in those moments when I was down and couldn’t see it myself.

I felt validated, listened to, and supported from Paul, and in the 6 months he worked with me, am in a much better place mentally- plus I now have mental tools and techniques on which I can fall back as I need them.

My former phobia is reduced to a stage I would have thought completely impossible, as I’ve suffered from it since as early as I can remember, from childhood. I will continue working on it using what Paul has taught me, and I know my quality of life due to this is much improved.

My advice if anyone is deliberating over hiring Paul is to go for it- he has been wonderful and well worth it, and you feel like a wise friend is guiding you throughout the whole process.

Thanks, Paul, and I will definitely come back to you in future should I need further help.

Zoe. UK.
December 2020.

I had never had counselling before and heard about Paul through a family member. As us men really find it hard to reach out and talk about our struggles.

I lost my best friend 2 years ago and Paul helped me to understand the grieving process and accept my best friends death.

Paul also helped me with my self confidence and a few other areas too.

I just want to say how much Paul has helped me through the tough days and made me realise that life is worth fighting for! I honestly can’t thank Paul enough for what he has done for me in the time we have worked together.

I never thought I’d ever make that brave/scary move to ask for help, but I’m so so glad I did. I’m an anxious person as it is and Paul put me at ease from the get go!

Thank you so much Paul, I’d highly recommend him to anyone.

Sam. UK.
April 2021.

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