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Existential Therapy in London | Psychotherapy & Counselling

What is Existential Psychotherapy and Counselling?

Existential psychotherapy is a style of therapy that focusses on the human condition as a ‘whole’. It focusses on free will, determination and the search for meaning, making the individual as the centre of attention, rather than focussing on the symptoms. It emphasise human capacity to make rational choices to develop maximum potential. This approach focusses on the human capacity to self-awareness, by identifying each individual’s unique identity in the relationship. As a result, it helps people recreate their identity with changing situations. This psychotherapy uses a positive approach that encourages human capacities and aspiration, while acknowledging human limitations.

How does Existential Therapy work in London?

Existential Psychotherapy in London focusses on the existence in the 'here and now'. Therapists who practice Existential Psychotherapy do no focus on the past; rather, they work with individuals in therapy to identify and explore the choices that lie within their capacity and to utilise those choices maximally.

In this approach to therapy, client and therapist work together to understand the inferences of the past choices and beliefs that led to certain consequences only as a mean to understand them. The therapist then helps the client to adapt a healthier approach with the help of retrospection.

It helps the individual to realise that their adapted solutions are neither unique nor purpose specific, rather they end the obligatory chains that prevents the individual from existing to their fullest potential. When that happens they achieve the ability to enhance their freedom.

What does Existential Therapy help with?

Existential Therapy works with people who are willing to explore the reasons of their intrapsychic conflicts and the decisions that led to their current circumstances. There are many behavioral and mental health issues which can be successfully treated with existential psychotherapeutic approach which includes:

  • Depression;
  • Anxiety;
  • Substance misuse;
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder caused because of exposure to military combat, rape and childhood sexual abuse, interpersonal violence or other life threatening situations.

Results of attending Existential Psychotherapy London

Individuals who are willing for this treatment tends to find meaning and purpose in their lives and often experiences heightened self-awareness, self-understanding, self-respect and self-motivation. Realisation regarding being the predominantly responsible for their own recovery often increases the likelihood that people sees beyond therapeutic limits and recovers.

It helps to alleviate anxiety, shame, guilt and other difficult emotions through honest self-evaluation and at the same time, this approach candidly confronts the realities of life such as death, meaninglessness, loss and suffering and also promotes positive experiences, relationships and emotions. It also encourages patients to:

  • Evaluate their values, beliefs and situations;
  • Acknowledge their limitations as well as the possibilities for their lives;
  • Find meaning and purpose in their lives;
  • Develop more effective ways of communication.

What to expect when attending Existential Counselling London sessions

When attending Existential therapy sessions, the therapist helps the client to find meaning in the face of anxiety by choosing to think and act responsibly. The client, during the process, gains the ability to confront negative internal thoughts, rather than external forces - like societal pressures. Thus, through attending existential therapy sessions, creativity, love, authenticity and free will is fostered. As a result, existential counselling helps to transform the client’s approach to life.

Similarly, when treating addiction disorders, existential therapist guides you to face the anxiety that tempts you to use drugs and guides individual to take the complete responsibility of your action and choose the action wisely.

Through attending existential therapy sessions, individuals learn to make willful decisions about how to live, drawing on creativity and love. Instead of just focusing on the situations and letting the external events to determine one’s behaviour, it guides individual to take a keen insightful decision that helps them in the longer run.

What is unique to Existential Therapy?

Existential therapy focuses on free will, self-determination and search for the meaning in life, whereas other therapies target individuals differently.

Psychodynamic therapies vs Existential therapy

Psychodynamic therapies focus on changing problematic behaviours, feelings, and thoughts by unrevealing the unconscious meanings and motivations buried inside human mind. Psychoanalytically oriented therapies are characterised by a close working partnership between the therapist and patient, where individuals learn about themselves by exploring their interactions in the therapeutic relationship. On the contrary, existential therapy does not emphasis to dwell on the past. Instead, it uses past as the guideline to promote freedom in decision making and develop assertiveness.

Cognitive and Behavioural therapy vs Existential therapy

Cognitive and Behavioral therapy, on the other hand, focusses on the role of developing healthy behaviours and restructure dysfunctional thinking. According to this approach, how we think lead to dysfunctional emotions and behaviours and thus, by rectifying those irrational and dysfunctional thoughts and thinking patterns, people can alter how they feel and what they do. Hence, cognitive restructuring helps individual to think in an optimistic way and help them to cater their problems. This approach works on the dynamic of pros-and-cons or cause-and-effect phenomenon, where certain aspect of the problem is dealt with. However, in existential therapy the focus lies on the individual’s free will, making the individual responsible for their own betterment and separating the problem from individual. 

Getting Existential Counselling in London

We offer Existential Therapy at our clinics in Central London.

Therapists for Existential Therapy in London

All our Therapists offer Existential Counselling. Click here to meet the Team.

Fees for Existential Therapy in London

Sessions with our Psychologists are by prepaid appointments only. You can find out more about our fees on our Fees Page.

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