You don’t have to “have problems”, be sick, disabled, disadvantaged or disturbed to benefit from therapy. You can be a fulfilled, well-functioning person and enter therapy simply to get even more of what you want from life. Transactional Analysis therapy may also be sought by anyone who is experiencing personal problems, ranging from temporary relationship or work difficulties to more severe disturbances.
Therapy is a process designed to help people in achieving personal change. We all invest some level of energy in blanking out aspects of reality that might threaten the picture of the world we put together in childhood. If we are to solve problems and change effectively, we need to become aware of the aspects of reality we have been blanking out since we do this outside of awareness. Family members typically have “blind spots” that all members of the family are brought up to share. Just as likely, we select friends and partners that have blind spots in common with our own. Therefore, one purpose of working with a therapist is that he/she gives individuals a source of feedback which is not subject to their own blind spots. The therapist offers support and protection while individuals experience change. The therapist may, from time to time, confront diversion tactics an individual may employ (outside of awareness) to defend against change.
As a TA therapist, I take joint responsibility with my clients to achieve whatever change they wish to make. This is based on the assumption that my clients and I relate on equal terms. It is not up to me to do things to my clients, nor do I wish my clients to come to me expecting I will do everything for them. Since we both take part in the process of change, it is important that we both know clearly how the task will be shared. Therefore, we enter into a therapist/client contract. This is a statement that defines both treatment goals and mutual responsibilities in achieving those goals. Clients say what they want to change and what they are willing to do to bring about that change. I confirm that I am willing to work with my client in this task. Contracts are open to amendment as therapy proceeds, as updates and changes of goals may be frequent.
Because Transactional Analysis, as originally formulated by Eric Berne, is largely an educational process, I introduce a simple common vocabulary, and tend to train clients in the skills of analyzing ego states, transactions, games and scripts. I also encourage and assist clients to identify Adult options for dealing with people, problems and situations in their lives. I often use educational aids, such as handouts, large writing pads and whiteboards. I provide permission for clients to play an active role in therapy. My aim is to provide a supportive and nurturing client/therapist relationship conducive to clients assuming greater personal responsibility for their lives.
If you have an interest in entering TA therapy, the first step is to contact me by telephone and we can set up a mutually agreeable time to meet. The first session may last one hour and is an information gathering session at which time we then decide if we will continue the therapist/client relationship and thereby enter into the therapist/client contract. The first session is free of charge.