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What Is Psychology?

psychology session with Emi Golding

What is Psychology? Good question. Psychology is often defined as the study of the mind and behaviour. But that's the academic definition. I guess the more important definition is the one that shows what psychology can do for you. Psychology, when used and applied the right way, can open up your life to a freshness you have not experienced before. Isn't that what we are all after?

The reality is that psychology has been applied to a range of different fields in life.

Probably the most well known branch of psychology is “clinical or counselling psychology”. This branch of psychology focusses on mental health and ill-health, and tries to understand what is going on for people when we become unwell. It also about what we can do to help people become happier.

When you go to see a psychologist like myself for a counselling session, or you are seeing a psychologist in hospital, this is the kind of psychology that is being used, 'clinical or counselling psychology'.

Within this branch of psychology there are lots of different tools and things I can use to help you change and feel better. You might have heard of some of them like :

  • Cognitive Behaviour Therapy

  • Interpersonal therapy

  • Dialectical Behaviour Therapy

  • Acceptance & Commitment Therapy

  • Narrative Therapy

  • Neuro Linguistic Programming

  • Existential Humanistic methods

  • Psychodynamic approaches

  • Gestalt Therapy

  • and there are many more

But if all of this is a tad confusing, don't worry, the good news is you don’t need to understand what all of these are in order for the techniques to work or to get help. It’s just that, sometimes, people want to know what happens in a psychology session and they find it useful to know that there are different styles and approaches. What that means it that if one style doesn’t gel with you, you can always try another professional, who may have another style. A good psychologist will have trained in many different approaches, and can use the best parts of each to help you.

So, in your first session with me, we'll get to know each other a little bit, and find out what's going on for you and what we can do to get you on the road to recovery, working together in a way where we are both happy and relaxed.

Besides clinical or counselling psychology, some other branches of psychology are:

Organisational Psychology – involves working with organisations and employees, to help them improve workplace performance and productivity. It includes things like how to recruit effectively, leadership skills, motivation, personality and strength assessments, team dynamics, etc.

Forensic Psychology – includes study of crime, prison populations, court processes like jury dynamics and decision making, sentencing, and how to reduce recidivism.

Animal psychology – the study of animal behaviour.

Child psychology – specifically looks at how children develop in healthy and unhealthy ways, and how we can support their learning and wellbeing.

Sports psychology – looks at how athletes can perform better.

Performance psychology – how anyone can perform at a higher level in any endeavour.

And there are many more. Sure, these are very specific branches and, while I know the basics, I don't pretend to be an expert in all of them. I am, however, pretty well versed in what people need to know, do and see in order to experience refreshing and welcomed change.

If you are serious about changing your life and tackling your problems, why not give me a call and we'll see what we can do together.

I look forward to meeting you.


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