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Holistic Therapy 101

If you’re looking for therapy that is based on natural practices and ideals, you should consider Holistic Therapy. Holistic Therapy relies on achieving the optimal level of health through gaining balance. This practice takes a look at the ‘whole’ of a person, including mind, body, and spirit. All forms of healthcare are considered from medications to talking therapies in order to achieve a better understanding of what it is in someone’s lifestyle that is contributing to their problems.

The Holistic method of therapy operates under the idea that unconditional love and support is the best method of healing. They believe that:

  • People have the ability to heal themselves
  • A patient is a person, not a disease
  • Healing is a team effort and should analyze every part of a person to fix problems
  • Fix the condition, don’t just treat the symptoms
 

If this approach sounds interesting, read on for the types of treatment, how a session may look, effectiveness, and how to choose your therapist!

Types of Treatment

Holistic therapy has a big emphasis on self-improvement. This practice promotes a connection between the mind and body. Your therapist will take your symptoms and use them to foster a sense of awareness. Some methods he or she may suggest are:

  • Yoga
  • Tai chi
  • Breathing/Relaxation methods
  • Reiki
  • Massage therapy
  • Changing your diet

 Although, not every holistic therapy experience is exactly the same. 

How a Session May Look

The goal of Holistic Therapy being about the ‘whole’ of a person means that the type of therapy required for each patient will be inherently different. Your therapist will likely begin a session by checking in on your emotional and physical well being. Then, you will possibly be asked to participate in exercises to focus on psychological or physical issues. It’s possible that your therapist will try more of a Cognitive Behavioral Therapy approach (spotting and correcting behaviors with self-talk) or he/she may take a more mindful approach (visualizing techniques, journaling, etc).

Since there are so many different ways to approach holistic therapy, take care to find the professional whose practice most aligns with your needs. Your therapist will also take care to match their approach to what best suits you. This balance is important, so make sure you are getting it right.

Effectiveness

Like all therapy, the holistic approach is subjective. Some people may find this method more effective than others. Some researchers have found that the combination of practices and methods are more effective, while others disagree.

However, Reiki, one of the most common Holistic Therapy methods, has proven to be quite beneficial for people suffering from cancer. While other approaches may jump to medication as the only solution, holistic therapy likes to look at other methods first. This can be quite effective for people who do not like to look to medications as the first line of defense. This approach has also been known to be helpful for people suffering from anxiety disorders, stress-related issues, trauma-related disorders, sexual abuse, and more.

How to Choose a Therapist

When choosing a therapist, it is above all most important that you pick someone who you are comfortable with and who is supportive of you and your needs. Checking the credibility of this person and ensuring that they are proficient in the methods you need is also a good idea. There is a difference between a psychotherapist and a holistic therapist, so make sure you are aware of those differences.

Finding the right fit for you can be difficult, but the most important part is getting started. Looking for a therapist? Check out this blog post about how to choose the right mental health professional for you.

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