Victor Greene is a psychotherapist in private practice in the Edinburgh area

 


About Psychotherapy

 

For me Psychotherapy has three aspects to it. First, it is often a way experiencing ourselves in a different and deeper way. Psychotherapy offers a safe context within which to examine the complexity of our lives and the suffering we all experience as human beings. It is a way of listening to, witnessing and understanding a person or a group of people.

Secondly, psychotherapy is a body of knowledge and theory describing why humans do what they do. There are many different theories, old and new, in psychotherapy, but all have one tenet in common: experience with other people from the very beginnings of life, even in utero some believe, matter and shape who we become. Many divergent fields of science are providing proof of what the early founders of psychoanalysis theorized without the benefit of the amazing scientific technology we have today.

Thirdly, psychotherapy is a system of strategies and techniques used to help people overcome the difficulties in living. It assumes that each person's life history is unique, determined by environment and genetics. As a psychotherapist I strive to create a safe and protected environment for my clients to unravel the emotional and relational knots that keep them caught in difficulties. My ideas about the person's difficulties and my treatment strategies are co-created from the collaboration between the patient and myself and are particular to that person at that time in their lives and the treatment.

 Psychotherapy is based on the idea that what causes people emotional and interpersonal difficulties are outside of their ability to know about them. This is why the advice of family and friends, self-help books and strategies, and willpower, while helpful at times, fail to provide the lasting relief from the issues that bedevil a person. Psychotherapy explores how these unconscious factors affect current relationships and patterns of thought, behaviour and emotions.

 To promote the kind of emotional growth that psychotherapy can provide requires time and energy and resources. It is not always a smooth path as change does not always come very easily. There are parts of each of us that want things to stay the same and can throw up powerful distractions and diversions to avoid change. We want to stay the same while changing. Also as change begins to occur, you may feel worse rather than better. This does not mean that the treatment is not working but that it is as you are able be aware of and feel previously walled off emotions. People often find that they may feel worse emotionally in the therapy, but that their lives are much better outside of treatment.