Psychology is the study of the science of the mind. In particular, the impact the mind has on human behaviour, memory, thinking, language, sensation, perception, emotions, dreams and mental health.
Psychology helps you unravel whether your choices and behaviour are influenced by environmental factors or by genetics – nature vs nurture.
Originally there were two theoretical prospective – Functional Psychology, which aims to uncover the underlying cause of behaviour, and Structural Psychology, which focuses on introspection.
Behaviourists then created a more scientific method of studying behaviour and Cognitive Psychology was developed. Now there are a wide range of different branches of Psychology (Social, Behavioural, Cognitive), which offer different approaches, viewpoints and techniques.
What are the benefits of Psychology?
Many psychologists work to help people recover from stress, trauma, abuse, addictions, grief, bereavement and eating disorders. They also address mental health issues such as depression, anxiety, panic attacks and obsessive-compulsive disorders.
Psychology can also be helpful for addressing communication problems within working teams, personal relationships or family dynamics. They can help with childhood development, eating disorders and parenting issues.
Some of the psychometric and personality profiling tests can also help you discover which type of job you maybe best suited too and help determine the best position for you within a team. For example, are you a natural project leader or do you shy away from responsibility and work best given a clear set of instructions?
Psychology can help you get a better understanding of how your conscious and sub-conscious mind influences your life choices, relationship choices and behaviour. A psychologist interprets your body language, emotions, feelings, and responses and offers a symbolic way of explaining your behaviour and responses.
What does a typical Psychology session look like?
It’s not unusual to feel a bit anxious or emotional about your first Psychology session.
Just remember that your therapist can help put you at ease so you can feel comfortable to talk about any feelings relating to things you want to resolve. You’ll be asked about your mood, past issues, support networks, routine and coping strategies.
The psychologist may use some psychological testing (set of questions) to help identify strengths and weakness in your personality and behaviour.
Towards the end of the session the therapist explains why you are thinking, feeling or behaving in a certain way. They can provide empowering strategies to help you cope better.
How do I find a Psychologist that suits me?
This is a talking therapy so ideally you need to find a therapist that you feel you have a natural rapport with. Some psychologists specialise in specific mental health issues or certain types of trauma, whereas others may focus on relationships or career advice.