What is Existential Psychotherapy?
Existential Psychotherapy is a unique form of therapy that focuses on identifying and challenging our system of values which then allow us to live a more meaningful and purpose-driven life. Existential psychotherapy emphasizes each person’s uniqueness and how our choices shape our life. The therapist will work alongside clients as they explore their values, assumptions and ideas. Existential therapy helps us look at life more realistically, combat anxieties over death, dying, and loneliness. Additionally, Existential psychotherapists assist clients in accepting and facing their fears, while also helping clients develop the skills necessary to overcome such worries. One of the primary goals of Existential Psychotherapy is to enable you to live each day to the fullest by helping you understand what is meaningful, special, and joyful to you.
Existential therapy has become popularized by modern-day therapists such as Emmy Van Deurzen and Irving Yalom. The roots of Existential Psychotherapy are based on the teachings of existential philosophers such as Jean Paul Sartre, Martin Heidegger, Friedrich Nietzsche, Soren Kierkegaard, and Edmund Husserl.
What Issues does Existential Psychotherapy treat?
Existential therapy can help with a wide range of issues including but not limited to:
- Death Anxiety
- Death Anxiety
- Feelings of Meaningless/Hopelessness
- Feeling ‘Stuck’
- Identity Conflict
- Major Life Transitions/Decisions
The Existential Therapy Relationship
The existential psychotherapy relationship focuses on choice, freedom, human limitation, meaning, responsibility, self-awareness, and self-exploration. How individuals cope with these issues vary immensely from individual to individual. Flexibility is one of the most important factors in Existential Psychotherapy.
Research has demonstrated that one of the most important predictors of obtaining success in therapy and counselling is the relationship between you and your therapist. At Mind + Zest, we take this research to heart. Our counselors will collaborate with you to develop a therapeutic plan that is tailored to your strengths, goals, and desired areas of change. Typically, most clients will have a sense of when their counselling goals have been reached. This sense of success typically emerges when you have overcome significant issues in your life and notice new feelings and changes in your behaviours. You may notice an increase in energy, mood, enthusiasm, motivation, general well-being, and interest, and you will gain the confidence to tackle new challenges on your own.
Successful counselling also depends on sustaining contact and momentum with your counselor. By regularly attending sessions, progression and healing is attained more quickly than when sessions are spread far apart or occur irregularly. Most of our clients find weekly sessions the most productive, while some individuals find bi-weekly or twice-a-week sessions as most effective.
If you or someone you know is struggling, don't hesitate to reach out. The Mind + Zest team here to help. Click below and get connected to a therapist as quickly as today!