Self Help From A Therapist… Welcome!

Some how self help seems to be a strange concept when you are a therapist.

After all, if self help actually worked, who would need a therapist?

Wouldn’t it just be solved by the person themselves, without any outside ‘expert’ intervention?

This is the paradox I found myself in as I did therapy with people. So many of them would come in because all the effort they had made for themselves had not paid off in the way they hoped.

I didn’t want them to stop making their own efforts, and start relying on me or other so-called experts to run their lives for them. Were they meant to ‘outsource’ their relationships, their problems, even their happiness, just like they might outsource their accounts to a bookkeeper? No way!

Because there were some people who tried to do that…

“I want to stop smoking, and I’ve come to you for hypnosis.”

The more I heard lines like this the more I realized that they just wanted to lie back, disappear from the world for a while, and wake up changed forever.

They were handing all of the responsibility over to me – and worse than that… I was accepting it!!!

The dawning realization that I was being taken for granted, made me mad.

I became a ‘thera-pissed’.

Bit-by-bit my ‘therapy’ changed. More and more my work became about handing back responsibility to the person themselves.

And this is where this blog begins, and ends. With you – the person who wants changes in your life.

Welcome. I look forward to helping you to help yourself.

-Dr Martin W. Russell

6 thoughts on “Self Help From A Therapist… Welcome!”

  1. Steven Herman` says:

    It seems that far too many people want to delegate their own responsibilities nowadays. You see it in kids, parents, bosses and government.

  2. Therapy can be a necessary intervention in a crisis and has a legitimate place as probably does medication. But more often than not it is just used as an excuse to prolong the misery. And who’s going the break that cycle?

  3. I suspect few people head for a therapist without first having made some attempt at DIY. They are to be congratulated for their attempts and persuaded (where they need to be) that an effective and supportive therapist will have them continue in this vein.

    By continuing to accept their own responsibility for their “cure” they (the client) can gain ownership of the therapist’s “expertise” thus drawing maximum benefit from it.

  4. I give this entire concept of self-help internship 5 stars because it seems that Dr Martin has found a way to increase the value of his blog, which would increase his rankings with the search engines!! Way to go, Doc! Win-win for both yourself and your interns! Perhaps now you can help me come up with a similar concept for my own endeavors…! What do you say?

  5. For years I considered going to school to become a therapist. The thing that stopped me was an awareness that most people want to be fixed but they don’t want to have to work at it.

    Still hopeful, I went to school and became a licensed Hypnotherapist. I couldn’t do any type of counseling but still held a hope that I might help with issues such as smoking, weight loss, and phobias. Unfortunately I quickly found my worst nightmare was true. Nine out of ten people expected to be hypnotized and fixed. When I explained that it simply didn’t work that way, and I always did explain it before any work was done, most people changed their minds. Of the ones who went forward many had less than hoped for results and blamed either me or hypnosis.

    The ones who did experience success were very appreciative. They made the effort worthwhile for a while, but I finally threw the towel in.

    I salute you Dr. Martin. From someone who has been to therapy themselves, read countless self help and positive mental attitude books, gone through NLP, and worked with hypnosis I have to say you are RIGHT ON THE MONEY! I have enjoyed reading your posts immensely and look forward to more.

  6. DavidOB:

    From someone with your experiences as a basis for judging my work, I really appreciate the comments. Rest assured there is much more yet to come.

Leave a Reply