Individual counseling is a type of therapy where a counselor works with an individual patient to treat emotional, psychological, or behavioral issues. It is also referred to as ‘private’ or one-on-one counseling, as it focuses on specific issues between the patient and the counselor. The sessions usually last around 45 minutes to an hour, though they can be extended if necessary.
There are many different types of individual therapy that incorporate elements of other forms of therapy while also addressing specific issues. An example would be cognitive behavioral therapy, which focuses on how thoughts affect feelings and behavior. There are also other approaches such as dialectical behavioral therapy, interpersonal relationship therapy, and solution-focused therapy, to name a few.
Counselors may use all these therapies to help a patient, or they may integrate elements of different forms of therapy in order to give the most effective treatment. No one type of individual counseling is superior to another; what matters is that the patient is able to effectively express their concerns and receive the care they need.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I benefit from individual counseling?
Most people can benefit from individual counseling at some point in their lifetime. With that being said, there are a few signs that could indicate you might need individual therapy:
- Feeling overwhelmed, unable to manage day-to-day life, or just “not like yourself”
- Experiencing strong and intense emotions that are difficult to control or feel out of your control, such as anger or irritability
- Struggling with a psychological condition such as depression, anxiety, or PTSD.
- Experiencing relationship problems that seem to be never-ending or repeating themselves in different relationships, such as abusive patterns or an inability to trust others
- Losing something or someone important to you
- Experiencing a traumatic event
If you are experiencing any of these issues, then chances are individual counseling could help you manage your life and feel more in control. To take the first step, schedule a consultation with our team at Transitions Counseling in Glendale, North Phoenix, South Mountain, Chandler, or via telehealth.
Who performs individual therapy?
Individual therapy is performed by clinicians who specialize in mental health care. Our clinicians have graduate degrees in counseling or psychology and have completed all state and national licensure requirements. In addition to their education, all of our team members are personable, compassionate, and have a general passion for helping others.
What can I expect during an individual counseling session?
At your first individual counseling session, your therapist will ask about your history and current situation, as well as why you’re seeking therapy, what you hope to gain from it, and how comfortable you are sharing personal information with another person. While this may feel uncomfortable, this information helps your therapist learn more about you and better understand how they can help you.
After learning about your individual needs, your mental health clinician will explain the types of treatment that might be helpful for you. They will then help you come up with a treatment plan that best meets your needs, taking into consideration things like cost and insurance coverage.
During individual counseling sessions, the counselor may ask questions about your symptoms to help determine whether they are improving or getting worse. You may also go over things that happened between sessions, including difficult situations that made you feel distressed and steps you can take to prevent them in the future.