In Conversation with Ms. Gita Parekh
In Conversation with Ms. Gita Parekh – Psychotherapist and Tarot Card Reader
Q. Please tell us about yourself.
I am Gita Parekh, a psychotherapist and counsellor. As a philomath – a lover of learning and studying – I, in spite of having a degree in nutrition, pursued my thirst of understanding of people’s behaviour and personalities and studied psychotherapy and counselling, which I now pursue as a profession. My moto has always been “to touch people’s life in a positive way”.
Q. What is your area of expertise and what kind of services do you offer?
I believe that you can make people around you “happy” only if you are “happy and healed”. I believe in a holistic approach to treating my clients. So, my focus is on the person’s wellness and not just their illness or condition. In keeping with this, I use normal and paranormal studies to my advantage for the “wholesome” treatment of my clients which include.
- Emotional Mind
- Career / Student
- Stress Management
- Time Management
- Anger Management
- Alternate Healing Therapies
- Tarot / Angle Card Reading
- Handwriting Analysis / Graphology
- Core Issue Therapy / Chakra Healing
Q. How long have you been practicing? What inspired you to become a Psychotherapist?
My inspiration has always been self-enquiry. The fact that people confided in me and took my guidance and opinion on various aspects or spheres of life made me think of it as my natural or instinctive talent or passion. One of my sisters-in-laws motivated me to pursue my natural counselling skills and urged me to pursue and study it professionally. My experience has also taught me a lot. So, thanks to life, who has been my best “teacher” and my thirst for knowledge on both normal and paranormal aspects, I have learnt other modalities to make my approach unique, inclusive, and wholesome.
I started studying counselling by attending a few workshops in 2007, which were extremely beneficial in identifying psychotherapy and counselling as my calling Under the guidance of wonderful teachers and mentors, I finally did my MS in Psychotherapy and Counselling in the year 2010. Following this, I attended 100 sessions of “self-counselling”, which is compulsory to start practising as a “psychotherapist and counsellor”. After completing this, my career had officially begun in 2012.
So, here I am today, an experienced, yet learning, genuine, and positive cancer survivor, in front of you, offering my natural skills and learned abilities to help my clients.
Q. What methods do you use with your clients to help them avoid having negative feelings?
Psychotherapy or talk therapy is a way to help people with a broad variety of mental illness and emotional difficulties by assisting the person in understanding their repressed feelings and equipping them to face new challenges. Both in the present and future, psychotherapy can help eliminate or control troubling symptoms, so a person can function better and can increase their well-being in the long run. Psychotherapies are non-judgemental and compassionate; their approach required one to listen carefully and analyse the psychological needs of their clients and help them accordingly.
- Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT): The belief of CBT is that a person’s mood is directly related to the person’s thought. It helps people to identify and change thinking patterns that could be harmful and replace them with beneficial thoughts and behaviours. CBT can be used in stress, anxiety, insomnia, depression, post traumatic stress disorders (PTSD), and eating disorders.
- Dialectical Behaviour Therapy: This is a type of CBT that helps regulate emotions. It is used to treat people with long-term suicidal thoughts and those with borderline personality disorders, eating disorders or PTSD. Clients are taught new skills to help change unhealthy or disruptive behaviour patterns through individual or group sessions.
- Interpersonal Therapy (IPT): IPT is used as a short-term treatment to help clients understand their underlying interpersonal issues such as unresolved grief, changes in social life and work, and relationship conflicts. For example, if someone who responds to feeling neglected by getting angry, this may trigger a negative reaction in others leading to depression and isolation.
- Psychodynamic Therapy: This is my favourite type of therapy. It is based on the concept that behaviour and mental health is influenced by past childhood experiences and inappropriate repetitive thoughts or feelings that the client is not conscious of. Clients are helped by addressing these issues, improving self-awareness, and changing old patterns.
- Family Therapy: It can provide a safe space for family to (i) express their view, (ii) explore difficult feelings, (iii) understand each other, (iv) build on existing strengths, (v) find solutions to problems.
- Relationship Therapy: This kind of therapy is similar to family therapy. However, it is conducted with the partner to address issues within their relationship.
Some therapies last for only few sessions, while others may continue for months or years, depending on the person’s need. Individual sessions usually last around 45-90 minutes and follow a structured process. Sessions may be one-on-one, in pairs, or in groups. Techniques can include talking and other forms of communication, such as drama, storytelling, music, or drawing and painting.
Some clients may want help for a chronic illness that is interfering with their emotional and physical well-being, Others have short-term problems, like they may be undergoing a divorce, overwhelmed by a new job, be grieving family members death, or even empty nest syndrome. Psychotherapy can help navigate both these situations.
The psychotherapies might ask you to tackle certain tasks designed to help you develop more effecting coping skills. This approach often involves homework. Most therapies do not tie themselves to any one approach. Instead, they blend elements from different approaches and alter their treatment according to each patient’s needs.
Q. How do you use Numerology with Psychotherapy?
Numerological knowledge can be essential for the inner understanding of oneself. It also helps in psychological and psychotherapeutic practice. Numerology can help in a profound analysis of personality, which is what psychology is all about. So, numerologists can provide answers for a lot of questions regarding a person’s personalities through their date of birth and full names.
Numerology is based on calculation, introspection, and observation, which is very close to what science and psychology are. So, numerology is close to psychology as their research is based on inner and outer worlds of people. If these two directions are joined, the possibilities for growth, common use and happiness of people are huge. Therefore, with additional knowledge of numerology, it makes it easier for me to crack the client’s basic personality and aids me in the process of analysing and understanding the person with much greater accuracy and speed. Further, my knowledge of hand-writing analysis, helps me use the changes seen in present signature to further analyse a client’s personality.
Finally, everything boils down to belief in oneself and methods for self-improvement. Practice makes a man perfect is the universal truth. You have to practice a change for it to become a habit too. So, minor tweaking of these modalities will help in the longer run.
Q. Please share an anecdote where you made your client bring about a significant change with your session.
Clients who come for therapies always think that their sorrow, problem, grief, and experience are the greatest. They believe that they have gone through the worst and nothing of it is duplicated or experienced by someone else.
One such incident was when one of my clients, whose spouse was having an extra-marital affair, was narrating the pains of her experience. She said that the way she made her spouse admit to the affair was by showing him a movie and how she was able to relate to the exact angst, fear, and pain of the victim. However, she continued to claim that her grief was original and cannot be felt by someone else. So, I brought it to her notice that it was a “movie” that helped her confront her partner and a movie is always written or scripted by someone’s experience or someone’s story. So, the very fact that the person has already gone through something similar shows that her sorrow is not unique. Hence, each one definitely has his or her story of life and nobody’s pain is big or small. This is what I was able to convey to her and helped her realize.
Q. How effective do you find online sessions? Do you experience any challenges while conducting these sessions/workshops?
Online sessions do have their limitations. We do not have the 100% attention of the patient because of the external distraction at home or office.
The full body language cannot be observed as there are limitations of the screen. With the body language, the therapist can gauge a lot of the client. Hence, the session missed the lack of intimacy and intricacy that real world interactions possess.
Appearance, clothing, and dialogue become more causal from the client’s side. Online sessions add a layer of complexity that makes privacy leaks and hacks more of a concern. Technology problems can also make it difficult to access when you really need it. Since online therapists are distant from the client, it is difficult to respond quickly and effectively when a crisis happens. If you have serious addictions or severe or complex mental health conditions, online therapy can be less effective. Online therapy eliminated geographic restraints, making enforcement of legal and ethical codes difficult.