Something to fix or something to face?


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People often come to therapy with the view that they want to fix something that they feel is wrong. Like they want to fix a bad memory of something. They’d like the remove an unwanted, uncomfortable feeling. Therapy doesn’t work like that. It is hard work.

Take depression. Depression often presents as a heavy feeling characterised by an overwhelming sense that there is nothing that can be done about the situation. It may very well be true. Sometimes nothing can be done to change a particular situation. Life can really dish up some rubbish when it wants to but we have to get on with living. There really is no other healthy choice.

Death can sometimes feel like an option but is simply a long-term solution to what may be a short term problem. So, the only way out of a depression is out and you have to work at it. The work is often painful with very intense emotions. Avoiding these thoughts and feelings can create other problems. Avoidance can take many forms. A common way is to indulge in a substance. This is OK for a little while but people can get stuck for years trying to erase bad memories. 

Avoiding negative thoughts and uncomfortable feelings has the opposite effect. The memories can grow in potency while whole lives are geared around trying to forget something terrible. The result is often a sense of inertia and hopelessness while erasing memories can become the focus of life. It is ironic how avoidance of painful emotions reinforces a sense of inability to cope and sets up a negative feedback loop that grows in intensity.

The alternative is to face the memories and the associated pain while making the conscious decision to get on with life. Confronting the memories is like standing up to a ten foot tall monster that scares the hell out of you but can not actually touch you. The memories can not hurt you anymore. They are past. Avoidance actually keeps the memories fresh. Professional counsellors can help you pass through this difficult terrain.

Moving from a life of avoidance and back into a life full of action changes one’s head space from being a victim of things that have happened and moves them to take up the stance of a survivor.

Take Care

Therapy Monkey


What exactly is therapy? 1.

Family Therapy

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Blog 1.

Hello to you the reader

Therapy is a beautiful thing. I believe that therapy (or counselling) is a space where a person (or more than one in the case of group or family therapy) can get together with a therapist to discuss what is happening in their life.

Discussions with the therapist brings about realisations about thinking, feelings and behaviour. The change in understanding opens one up to new possibilities. The therapist’s skill is important here. You need to find the right person.  

The therapeutic relationship is very powerful because the therapist is completely neutral about the outcome and provides a space where people can realise their own potential. I do not believe therapists have a right to tell people what to do. The people, not the therapist must live out the consequences of their decisions. Unless they are going to harm them selves or others, of course.

Most people seek help about something in particular. Like when they are having trouble and need some help. Apart from dealing with the main issue that initiates therapy, it’s difficult to know exactly what is going to happen but you can look back at the end and see what has taken place. Like life….

Being open to the idea of personal growth is the key. In my experience, many people attend therapy/counselling for one reason and find that they have enriched their life in other areas as well. 

More later……..

Take Care

Therapy Monkey