How Does Therapy Work?

Many first-time clients show up to their initial session with no idea what to expect.

I would like to use this space to explain the process of psychotherapy also known as talk therapy. In my practice, I use active listening, analytical thinking, and warmth to support my clients through the therapeutic process.

The repeating cycle throughout treatment goes like this:

Team up

Therapy is a collaborative experience. You and your counselor will work together on your concerns. Your counselor adds a non-biased, educated and trained perspective to your narrative. This insight can help you understand what seemed elusive all along.


Now that you have better insight, it is time to establish goals and learning skills to attain these goals. Your counselor will apply psychological theory to your situation. This application will result in new skills that you will experiment with in your daily life. It's important to share what works and what doesn't with your counselor.


It is often said that "when you know better, you do better". Unfortunately, this is not often the case. It takes time, effort, and intention to make new behaviors stick. You and your counselor will work to implement the skills that give you positive results.

During the first therapy session, we start by working together to complete an intake form discussing your situation and background. There are many factors that contribute to any problem. As a clinician, this information is important in helping me get to know you and provide better care. We will also discuss your immediate concerns (i.e. what brought you to therapy). Clients need to be heard and I am here to listen!

The frequency of your following sessions depends on your unique concerns. As we progress through treatment, we will give each other valuable feedback. The relationship we build and the quality of our communication will be the backbone of your treatment. We are a team working together toward your therapy goals.

It goes without saying that treatment is hard work. You may have to endure uncomfortable feelings and the insecurity that comes with implementing changes. Remember, change by nature is uncomfortable and inevitable. Together, we will endure and overcome.

See you soon!

Author Chiffon M Samuel MA, LPC is a licensed health care professional expert in mental health medical content.