How to Find and Choose the Best Psychotherapy and Counseling
It can sometimes be tricky to find the right psychotherapy and counseling for depression, anxiety, panic, anger management, relationships, marital or other problems. New York clinical psychologist, Robert M. Fraum, Ph.D., provides candid insights and tips on how to find a good marriage counselor, psychotherapist, anger management therapist, or life coach, in NYC or anywhere. Dr. Fraum reviews some effective psychotherapy methods to help you to select the best treatment for your particular needs. He discusses issues of qualifications, training, and experience of mental health professionals like psychologists, psychiatrists and psychotherapists. He makes suggestions on how to locate a therapist through psychotherapy directories, professional referrals, and targeted online searches. He offers ideas on how to interview mental health counselors and pick the best therapist for your needs.
Searching for psychotherapy and counseling services at the same time that you want help can be daunting. Outside the NYC, LI, NJ, and Fairfield County, CT area, finding psychotherapy and counseling options can be difficult. So can picking the best psychotherapy or counseling in New York City or similar areas from the many psychology based therapy options available,
Wherever you live or work, it is worth taking a little time to learn about some key issues and to get useful tips for selecting appropriate psychotherapy and counseling and for finding and choosing a good mental health professional to work with.
Finding the best psychotherapy and counseling for you
Many people have asked me, how can I find the right psychological treatment approach for my particular needs?
Briefly, here are a few of the more effective psychotherapeutic orientations and methods commonly in use.
Psychodynamic and interpersonal psychology regard psychological problems as stemming from unresolved fears or inner conflicts, from misunderstandings about what we need, who we are, or how to relate to others. I find Psychodynamic psychotherapy and Interpersonal psychotherapy useful for enhancing basic security, personal growth, and relationships, for working through complex, difficult, or long-standing issues. These insight-oriented psychotherapy approaches are also useful in complementing behavioral and cognitive methodologies by providing meaningful clinical perspective and direction.
Cognitive behavioral psychology views particular learned patterns of thinking and behavior as primary sources of psychological problems. I find Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) for depression, anxiety, phobia, panic attacks (Panic Disorder), and similar conditions to be quite effective. CBT can also provide effective tools that work well with insight oriented psychotherapy approaches.
Chronic anger and stress are very common in the greater NYC area. Anger management counseling and stress management counseling generate practical solutions for these difficult, damaging problems. See Anger Management or Stress Management
Couple and marriage therapy, family and parent-child counseling can be very useful for addressing issues that affect these relationships. Couple and marriage counseling helps partners work together more effectively. Family members often find family therapy and child-parent counseling helps them to communicate and cooperate better. See Couple Therapy and Marriage Counseling
Identifying your particular issues or therapeutic needs can make it easier to select an appropriate clinical treatment option. you can learn more about psychological issues and treatment options on the Psychotherapy Services or the Solutions Oriented Psychotherapy Approach page. You are very welcome to call me if you have questions.
Choose licensed clinical psychologists and other qualified professional counselors
Select a qualified, professional psychologist, marriage counselor, anger or stress management therapist to work with.
The professional titles "therapist," "counselor," “psychotherapist,” "psychoanalyst," or "life coach" have no legal meaning, per se. People who use these terms may or may not have the educational credentials and clinical training to function professionally. Licensed psychologists and certified psychiatrists and social workers must pass state or professional examinations and credential reviews to become qualified mental health service providers. They are also required to adhere to a code of legal and professional standards.
Qualified mental health counselors often go on to get additional training to become more effective individual psychotherapists, cognitive behavioral therapists, couple and family therapists, psychologists, or life coaches.
Qualified clinical practitioners can be tremendously useful to you…or no help at all. Beyond professional credentials, successful psychotherapy and counseling depend upon:
- a therapist's empathic awareness, professional judgment, and clinical creativity
- an appropriate match between a client's needs and a counselor's skills
Locating a qualified psychologist, psychotherapist, or counselor
Psychotherapy and counseling directories, internet searches, and direct referrals can be useful for locating a qualified cognitive behavioral psychologist, psychotherapist, or marriage counselor.
Finding mental health practitioners through psychotherapist directories
Psychotherapist directories offer convenience. Professional organizations (e.g., The American Psychological Association), state and local mental health societies, and insurance company MCOs and PPOs maintain psychotherapist directories which reliably verify psychotherapists' basic qualifications.
Online psychotherapist referral directories may sometimes verify licensing but not other qualifications or information. Some provide helpful links to mental health practitioners' websites.
Locating psychotherapeutic counselling services online
You can get more detailed information about particular types of psychology based services by searching the web. Start with a search to select the type of psychotherapy modality (or professional) that interests you, e.g., individual psychotherapy and counselling. Here are other search terms that you can use:
- Individual psychotherapy (psychotherapist), marriage or child-parent counselling (counselor) family therapy, couple therapy, sex therapy (therapist) in NYC, New York, Brooklyn, NY, Eastchester, NY, etc.
- Trauma, stress management or anger management counselling (counselor); abuse, recovery or divorce counseling (counselor), life coaching (coach) in Purchase, Rye Brook, Mount Kisco, Westchester, NY, etc.
You can select a specific type of psychotherapeutic issue (e.g., Infidelity problem, couple therapist in Scarsdale, NY, etc:
- Depression, panic, PTSD, OCD, phobia psychotherapist (psychotherapy), in Greenwich, CT
- AADD (AADHD), academic, career, or communication problems coach (coaching), in Rye, NY
- Intimacy, relationship, divorce, grief, codependency issues counselor (counselor), in Harrison, NY
You can pick a particular type of treatment approach, such as cognitive-behavioral therapy for depression, in midtown Manhattan, etc:
- Rational-emotive, cognitive-behavioral therapy for panic attacks, in Mamaroneck, NY
- Humanistic, interpersonal, existential, psychodynamic, or psychoanalytic psychotherapy in NY, NY
Where psychotherapeutic services are plentiful, as in New York, Westchester, Rockland, Nassau County, NY and Fairfield County, CT, you can perform very specific searches:
- Psychotherapy and coaching for adolescents with ADHD/ADD in Great Neck, LI
- Cognitive-behavioral therapist for agoraphobia, Nyack, (Rockland County) NY
- Marriage and relationship counseling in Greenwich or Stamford, (Fairfield County) CT
Conversely, in smaller towns and less populated areas where clinical treatment options are less available, you will need to use more general search terms:
- Counselling or therapy for anxiety, phobia, panic, or PTSD in Suffolk County, NY
- Anger management counselor, therapist, or psychologist in Duchess County, New York
Find a good psychotherapy and counseling referral source
You may be able to locate the best psychotherapy and counseling services through a good psychotherapy referral from a professional or someone who knows you well. A trusted, knowledgeable physician, therapist, advisor, or close friend may have experience with therapists who have achieved good results with issues like yours.
Choose the best psychologist, psychotherapist or counselor for you
To choose the best counselor or psychotherapist for your particular needs and personal style, screen a number of clinical professionals for qualifications and availability. Then interview at least several and ask plenty of direct questions. Finally, consider some questions that I have for you.
Did they relate to you in an engaged, responsive, straightforward, and professional manner? Did you experience a sense of security, connection, and mutual fit?
Did the therapist freely discuss their therapeutic philosophy and treatment methods in clear, informative terms? Did she or he seem to possess a depth of insight into complex feelings, psychological issues and real world situations, as well as a willingness to offer concrete strategies and practical solutions? Did his or her therapeutic ideas, methods, and communication style fit your particular therapeutic issues and goals? Go with your gut feeling.
In summary, there are many ways to locate good, psychology-based services, wherever you live. The best clinical psychologist, cognitive behavioral therapist, psychotherapist, marriage counselor, anger or stress management counselor will be one who is right for your particular needs. Check qualifications and ask questions to choose a therapist that feels right for you.
Psychotherapy, counseling, and consulting practice in NYC and White Plains, NY
My New York City psychotherapy and consulting practice is located in midtown Manhattan at Park Avenue and 38th Street. The NYC office is convenient to Grand Central Station and the Queens Midtown tunnel.
I also offer psychology and counseling services in White Plains, NY. The Westchester, NY psychotherapy and consulting practice is located near I-287, easily accessible, for example, from Greenwich, Connecticut (CT) and Nyack, NY. I am currently in the process of trying to find a psychotherapy and counseling office in downtown Greenwich, CT.
You are welcome to call me for more information about how I can help you to achieve your particular personal or professional goals.