What Is Psychotherapy?

Psychotherapy is the practice of spending time with a trained therapist to help diagnose and treat mental and emotional problems. Therapy can take various forms—cognitive behavioral therapy, mindfulness-based cognitive therapy, psychodynamic therapy, or a combination of these—but at the center of each is the caring relationship between a mental health professional and a patient.

Recent posts on Therapy

The Hubris of Neuroscience

Pop neuroscience represents a reductionistic misapplication of knowledge, ignores differences between persons, and negates explanations of human conduct in terms of free will.
TomLynch/Shutterstock

Social Signaling

By Thomas Lynch Ph.D. on July 24, 2017 in Radically Open
Chronically depressed? Pay attention to your social signaling.

Serious Messages in Jokes About Therapists

By Marty Nemko Ph.D. on July 23, 2017 in How To Do Life
Unspoken issues that practitioners and patients may want to consider.

7 Stories You May Tell Yourself Invariably Arouse Anger

What fables might you tell yourself that increase your vulnerability to anger? Recognizing them and cultivating more realistic narratives is a potent pathway for healthy anger.

Mental Illness as Strategy: Game Theory and Psychiatry

Mental illness--like depression, anxiety, and even schizophrenia--is a game, a strategy, invented by the player (often without acknowledgment) to achieve some end, or "payoff."

How to Nurture Authenticity in Your Children

Parents want their children to lead happy lives, but paradoxically this can lead them to push their children in the wrong directions

Psychoanalysis and Psychiatry: Autonomy vs. Heteronomy

The psychiatrist as state agent, the psychoanalyst as contractual helper.
David Hellerstein

Unlocking the Unconscious: 30 Years Later

Thirty years ago Short Term Dynamic Therapy was poised to take over the world of psychotherapy. What happened?

What Business Are Therapists (Really) In?

Is your therapist doing therapy?

How and Why You Compromise Your Integrity

Your most important possession is your integrity. It’s your trustworthiness, word of honor. Yet at some point you’ve certainly violated this most “sacred” part of yourself. Why?

Help! My Antidepressants Aren’t Working

Are your antidepressants not working? Adding talk therapy may help.

Husbands Watch Porn, Wives Despair—But Why?

By Marty Klein PhD on July 19, 2017 in Sexual Intelligence
When couples argue about porn, they're usually arguing about something else.
123rf/orkidia

Is Authentic Suffering the Missing Link?

Authentic suffering is that which is obscured by what she wants us to know and what she will let us see.

Five Tools That Help Women Accept a Mental Health Problem

Wondering what tools help women accept a mental health problem? Women's resilience is manifold.

If Gandhi Was Your Marriage Therapist

Research has found that Gandhi's principles of fairness, peace, and principled protest can also change your love life.

Six Ways To Approach Childhood Emotional Trauma

Recovery from trauma and growing beyond it can seem challenging and even impossible. Here are some potentially useful tools to begin to take the first steps.

Navigating Abuse by the Clergy—Part One

Oftentimes, abuse inflicted upon victims by clergy occurs within a context that is religious and is supposed to be safe.

Losing a Pregnancy Only to Lose One Again

Recurrent pregnancy loss is an isolating and traumatic experience for many.

Can Talking Cure? And If so, How?

By Noam Shpancer Ph.D. on July 12, 2017 in Insight Therapy
What we talk about when we talk about talk therapy.
litvinovigor1/Flickr

Hey Doc, I'm Not Crazy! - Part I

Ever wonder why your primary care physician referred you to a psychologist? This may provide some insight.
Wu Jianxiong/Unsplash

Making the Most of Therapy

You made it past the first session. Now what?

How to Live Well with Bipolar Disorder

By David Leite on July 11, 2017 in Notes on a Banana
Bipolar disorder can take it toll. These six life strategies can make all the difference.

A Lethal Trifecta

Are you worried about a doctor colleague or family member or friend? Here are some things to think about.

How to Address 7 of the Most Unhelpful Beliefs About Sleep

By Seth J. Gillihan Ph.D. on July 10, 2017 in Think, Act, Be
Bad sleep opens the door for thoughts that only make sleep worse. Find out what some of the most troubling thoughts are, and how to fix them.

“Is Psychotherapy for People of Color?”

By Mariel Buque M.A. on July 10, 2017 in Unpacking Race
“Is Psychotherapy for People of Color?” Ways in which psychotherapy can be effective with Clients of Color.

I Have Cancer; Do I Need to See a Therapist, Too?

By Anne Moyer Ph.D. on July 09, 2017 in Beyond Treatment
When cancer's emotional and physical pain makes one feel defective or alone, a place to find support, compassion, and build coping skills has the potential to go a long way.

Shame of Our Cities: Neglect of the Mentally Ill

By Allen J Frances M.D. on July 07, 2017 in Saving Normal
A step-by-step comparison illustrates that the United States is the worst place in the world to be mentally ill and that Trieste is the best.

Lead by Listening

Most graduation speeches congratulate the graduates, saying something to the effect of: “This is the first day of the rest of your life.” This is not what Dr. Wake advised.

Want to Learn about Personal Construct Psychology?

Ringing in the 22nd International Congress on Personal Construct Psychology with a post and some links on the basics of personal construct theory.

A Psychological Fourth of July

We can too easily forget that the purpose of self-government is to secure our own safety and happiness.