Psychological assessment can answer questions that you have about your psychological functioning. For example, you may wonder why you have disturbing thoughts or why you struggle in your close relationships. Assessments can clarify a diagnosis, identify appropriate treatments, and identify targets for treatment. Sometimes I provide assessment through interviewing alone, but often I conduct psychological testing as well. In those cases, I provide psychological tests and questionnaires by email. I sometimes fill in the picture by interviewing a spouse or a parent. If a neurodevelopmental problem (such as ADHD or ASD) is suspected, I may also look at early report cards, if you have them.
By helping you understand yourself better, assessment can help you make better choices. Once I understand the particular questions that you have about yourself, I’ll shape the assessment to answer them.
If you’re thinking about psychotherapy, you probably feel stuck in some way. In psychotherapy, I help you to get unstuck.
In other words, psychotherapy is not something that I do to you. It’s a collaboration in which we work together to identify your goals, figure out what’s keeping you from meeting them, and find ways for you to overcome these obstacles.
To accomplish all these things, we’ll agree on a treatment plan suited to your particular needs and goals. In carrying out this plan, I may use treatment strategies drawn from psychodynamic, cognitive-behavioural, and mindfulness traditions. I may also provide training in relaxation or assertiveness, if appropriate.
I’ll encourage you to try new things, even though they may feel risky or difficult.
New activities that I encourage may be very private — such as tolerating a painful feeling a little longer than you would like to, or talking to yourself in a kinder way. Or they may be social or public — such as saying no to someone you usually give in to, or riding in an elevator despite your fear.
The changes you make, and how quickly you make them, will be entirely up to you.