Psychotherapy, Counseling, Dear Zindagi and more..

Psychotherapy, Counseling, Dear Zindagi and more..

An insight oriented psychotherapist by profession for over 10 years, and someone who’s been on the receiving end of therapy sporadically over the last 15 years, with the recent release of ‘Dear Zindagi’, here’s my take on the way psychotherapy is portrayed in some movies and TV shows:

(for more info on these, click on the titles)
*** Dear Zindagi ***

First of all, I am feeling ecstatic this movie was made- it reflects a pressing need of the hour with the alarming rate of young people committing suicides and giving into addiction. The fact that psychotherapy exists, is not known to so many! This movie helps spread the message that it exists and that there isnt any shame in it whatsoever- that’s just funny- to think of it in a shameful light- doesn’t make any sense whatsoever to think that way! See the film, you’ll know.

Coming to a qualitative portrayal of therapeutic journey- I suggest looking at the movie as a “highlights of Kaira’s sessions” or memories of peak moments in her therapy- film. With that lens, the gap between a realistic portrayal of therapy and the cinematic one becomes lesser. With regards to the boundaries and unconventional therapeutic environment issue, the therapist surely pushes it being hard-pressed for time since he had just a few shots within a 3 hr film to establish rapport, win her trust, get her to open up and reach core issues within layers of her personality to finally help free her from her shackles 😛 . I can personally look at it with a forgiving view as principally he adhered to most rules even in the outdoors sessions- the therapist is more of the open and available type than strictly clinical too which is why some clinicians will cringe, while others will nod with a quiet smile and understanding. The outdoors sessions and some in-the-room sessions remind me of children’s play therapy. It did stick to most of the rules on which basis change is possible. The most important thing which is why I’m in a forgiving mood, are the healing moments. The therapist’s character is alert in all the right places, picking up all of the signs that the client is dropping unaware her own self, and reflects back all that she is not saying, or is simply not equipped to say (So yes, I don’t find it sermon-y if seen with the “highlights of her therapy” lens). His penetrative gaze as he stays with her inner self, refusing to let her hide from emerging and giving her pain the importance so she can do the same and finally move on was very important: In these moments, the client is being “met”, through all the bullshit, through all the difficulties, through all the smokescreens, through most of her “layers”. Without this, meeting her forgotten experiences and aspects of her own identity and being would have been extremely difficult if not impossible in therapy- and the breakthrough she unknowingly sought in her life far away. So yes, all’s forgiven Dear Zindagi for getting that right 🙂 .

*** Awkward ***

In the American TV show Awkward, they are showing a “GUIDANCE & COUNSELOR” not a psychotherapist! Please know 🙂 hehe..

*** Good Will Hunting ***

Such a fantastic job! They show all the different kinds of analysts and therapists. Watch this film, educate yourself. But just like Dear Zindagi, please treat it with the “highlights” lens- that and the bit that the therapy-goer was a genius!

*** Hannibal (TV show) ***

Okay, barring the crimes and the later half of the show, it’s fantastic (Hannibal’s sessions with his therapist). The research is simply amazing.

*** The Prince of Tides ***

No. This is not how therapy works at all- not with all the ethics out the window. Poignant story, yes, Not therapy. Enough said.

*** Hope Springs (2012) ***

Couple’s brief counseling- Yes please. Hardly any rules broken. Quite a feat for showing therapy on screen. Though it comes only second to the Hannibal show.

*** Analyze This *** ; ***The Thomas Crown Affair (1999)*** ; *** Girl, Interrupted ***

A big yes for all three of these 🙂 .

Hope you’ll enjoy the list and find it helpful. You can surely add more in the comments- especially if you are a therapist/ have experienced proper counseling/ or ask if you have a show or movie in mind 🙂

Wishing you more power, in your journey 🙂
Kunjal.

Readdressing Love & its Issues

Flowing Insights Programme

designed & facilitated by

Psychotherapist

Ms. Kunjal Shah

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“The unexamined life is not worth living.”

-Socrates

“Whether its understanding our relationships better.. or we are going through a tough time in life due to specific problems or reasons, or if we are simply looking to “up” the game of life to the next phase or level- these sessions will certainly pave the way.

 

Flowing Insights sessions are designed for you in such a way, that you will be better able to reach the answers you seek. The topics are large and general enough to cover a huge range of issues. Your practice of the process you experience here, and the professional assistance I lend, will provide you with a road to resolve your specific problem from its root. You may check back your trial experiences of insights gained and fine tune the approach back in your life through later sessions. That’s the beauty of these sessions- it will not end in a single talk- It will end after you apply the insights learnt and come back with feedback and questions for more clarity and fuel for your journey in the next session.

 

The springboard for these sessions is You and Dr. Peck’s book: The Road Less Travelled. If you’ve read the book, going to read the book, or not read the book, it matters less. Your presence, some motivation and a little bit of openness is what’s required.

 

Our topic to begin with, is Readdressing Love & its Issues.”

 

Yours sincerely,

Kunjal Shah,

Your Psychotherapist & Counselling Psychologist during “Flowing Insights’ Programme”.

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THIS PROGRAM HAS BEEN DISCONTINUED. FOR QUERIES REGARDING THIS PROGRAM, YOU MAY DO SO BY USING THE FORM IN THE “CONTACT ME” SECTION.  THANK YOU.

Venue: HELP Library, VT, Mumbai.

Date:   1st session = 2nd July 2011

Time:   1 – 2:30 p.m.

Fee:     350 Rs. Per session. (Number of sessions to attend is upto you and your comfort.)

Group:  Small, Cozy & Warm 🙂

fyi:The Programme is divided across three main topics to be covered in a span of minimum 7 sessions:

a)                  Stagnation and monotony Vs Love, healing and growth.

b)                  Pains, problems, manipulations Vs Freedom, health and enrichment of relationships.

c)                  Understanding our resistances, Checking our “tools” & Onto our own roads to be travelled.

 

THIS PROGRAM HAS BEEN DISCONTINUED. FOR QUERIES REGARDING THIS PROGRAM, YOU MAY DO SO BY USING THE FORM IN THE “CONTACT ME” SECTION.  THANK YOU.

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