Lacamas Counseling Serves Vancouver, Camas, Washougal Washington and the surrounding areas
Individual counseling is also known as therapy or psychotherapy. It is a professional relationship that is solely focused on an individual’s immediate need or future concern. The individual may choose to pursue counseling services when they experience a life difficulty, problem, or transition that is beyond their normal ability to cope.
Individual Therapy may address concerns about:
- Mood and behavior (i.e. anxiety, depression, anger, isolation)
- Grief and loss
- Challenging and traumatic memories
- Abuse and safety
- Identity (i.e. self esteem, sexuality, family of origin, career)
- Transitions (i.e. school, parenting, job loss or retirement)
- Unmet potential (i.e. goals, future)
- Life problems (i.e. employment, school)
- Communication and relationships
Getting Started With Individual Counseling
Counseling is used to create a therapeutic relationship between the individual and their counselor. The therapeutic relationship offers space, safety, and trust to achieve growth. With this trusting relationship in place, the individual is encouraged to talk about and process through the problem or difficulty. Together, the individual and their counselor create goals and a plan for counseling (i.e. a treatment plan).
The counselor assists the individual in reaching their goals by providing education and skills training, giving an outside perspective, empowering the individual, asking thoughtful questions, collaborating to solve problems, and using many other therapy skills and strategies.
The individual practices these skills with their counselor and on their own. As the individual experiments with the strategies and skills they have learned in counseling, that individual gathers valuable feedback through successes, failures, and relapses. Feedback is used as a way to re-focus and align the individual toward their personal goals. Finding the courage to experiment with new strategies can lead to growth, progress, and change.
What to Expect from Counseling
The length of counseling depends on the individual’s concerns and goals. Counseling can be short-term (about 2-6 weeks) to address a specific problem or counseling can be long-term (about 2 months to 2+ years) to address larger and more complex issues.
Individual counseling appointments are typically scheduled weekly, though more or less frequently scheduled appointments can be arranged depending on the severity and intensity of the problems.
Eventually, as the individual reaches and maintains progress toward their goals, and if the individual is satisfied with their progress and no new goals are identified, then counseling is completed.
Individuals may decide to meet with their counselor on an infrequent basis (in several months or years) to “check-in” about the problems addressed in session or new problems, life difficulties, or transitions.