I first qualified as a psychotherapist using an approach called psychosynthesis. This is an integrative and holistic approach which recognises the spiritual nature of human beings and that something is seeking expression through the emotional problems a person brings to therapy.
Whilst I still hold the fundamentals of psychosynthesis as a guide for my work, in practice I now primarily use an approach called Intensive Short-Term Dynamic Psychotherapy (ISTDP). ISTDP, originally developed by Habib Davanloo, M.D., is a scientifically validated method of psychotherapy which aims to dramatically accelerate the process of change. Like psychodynamic psychotherapy, it aims to unlock and resolve the root causes for many psychological symptoms.
ISTDP is very rigorous and focused, and attempts to precisely address the key to change and healing. Holding the emotional problems you bring at the focus, we will work together on the way in which these problems occur in the moment in the therapy room or in your life outside therapy, helping us both to see the habits and patterns of behaviour that give rise to those problems. This involves making observations and encouraging self-observation of both what occurs in your mind and body, and also between us. There is a strong focus on anxiety regulation and on tackling the internal obstacles that prevent progress and healing.
Therapy isn’t something that is done to you, but is a process that demands hard work and commitment from both the client and the therapist. The ISTDP therapist is highly engaged in the process and will provide continual feedback to the client throughout the session.
ISTDP has been shown in scientific studies to be an effective treatment for a wide range of psychological problems including anxiety, panic attacks, OCD, personality disorders, depression, relationship difficulties, self-defeating and self-destructive patterns of behaviour and unexplained medical symptoms.