Maple Tree Counselling therapists use a number of different evidence-based therapies to help clients, and we are constantly updating our knowledge and practice according to the latest research. Goals for treatment are discussed within the first two or three sessions and a treatment plan tailored for each client. We usually recommend a minimum of 6 – 12 weekly or bi-monthly sessions, depending on these goals, but many clients use therapy for longer-term exploration of deeper-seated issues. Therapy approaches include:
ACT is a form of psychotherapy that teaches clients to accept what they cannot control and instead focus on committed actions towards a more meaningful existence. Negative thoughts and feelings are inevitable, but clients can create healthy space between themselves and unwanted experiences through targeted cognitive and behaviour strategies including mindfulness. Clients learn to increase psychological flexibility which allows them to stay present during difficult times and shift behaviour toward realising personal values and achieving goals.
CBT focuses on the interconnectedness of thoughts, emotions, behaviours and physical sensations. The client learns to identify unhelpful thoughts and behaviours that contribute to troubling symptoms and emotions. Effective coping strategies and new ways of thinking and behaving are explored. The origins of unhelpful belief systems or thought patterns may be discussed, but the focus of CBT is on making changes in the present and moving forward. CBT is an active form of psychotherapy in which the client is encouraged to practice skills between sessions.
MBCT or mindfulness-based psychotherapy involves a combination of cognitive techniques and mindfulness practices including meditation and breathing exercises to calm the nervous system and relieve overwhelming emotions. Clients learn to focus less on reacting to adverse experiences and instead accepting and observing their surroundings without judgment. MBCT is particularly helpful for interrupting automatic stress responses and breaking cycles of anxiety and depression.
Schema therapy combines elements of CBT and psychodynamic psychotherapy to help clients change long-standing maladaptive thought and behaviour patterns. Schemas refer to deep, self-defeating belief systems often originating in childhood and perpetuating behaviourally throughout one’s life. Initially, sessions focus on identifying and exploring the origins and operation of schemas in the client’s life. The focus ultimately shifts to replacing schemas with healthier patterns to meet emotional needs including nurturing relationships and finding self-worth.
Psychodynamic psychotherapy is an in-depth exploration of how past experiences and emotions impact current relationships, behaviours and decision making. The client is encouraged to recall childhood events and important relationships in order to uncover conscious and unconscious thoughts and feelings. Psychodynamic theory holds that greater understanding of the past will enable more clarity and healthy behaviours for the future. This type of psychotherapy is a good fit for those who are curious about recurring patterns and the inner self.
Narrative therapy helps clients explore their identity and goals both in relation to and separate from their present circumstances. This may involve writing or drawing significant life events in order to detach from them, find new perspectives and challenge old and unhealthy beliefs. Clients work to observe themselves objectively and “rewrite” their narrative with less blame and greater self knowledge of both their past and future goals. This type of psychotherapy is not focused on changing the client but rather the stories they tell themself.
EFT focuses on love, attachment and bonding in family or intimate relationships. It is a deep exploration of the emotions underlying trauma and conflict patterns. Clients learn de-escalation techniques that allow them to identify negative cycles and begin to more openly discuss fears and insecurities. Ways of building trust and restructuring relationship patterns are also discussed and put into action. EFT can be used for couples, individuals or families.
IFS is a framework for exploring every aspect of personality and behaviour in a welcoming, nonjudgmental way. Each part of a client’s personality has value, even the parts that may seem unhelpful or destructive. Through guided exercises, clients learn why each part developed, how the parts work together and where conflict may exist between them. A goal of IFS is an increased understanding of the core or true self underlying the parts, enabling clients to approach situations in their life with greater curiosity, compassion and clarity.
These therapies are delivered by our diverse, multicultural team with rich life experience and international professional qualifications and accreditation. We deliver therapy in person or online via video call.