One thing that occurs naturally in people’s minds when it comes to psychotherapy is: How can talking help me?

A psychotherapist does more than talking and listening. A psychotherapist is somebody trained to perform the assessment of the emotional problem or behavioral problem of the patient, and to apply standard intervention methods to change dysfunctional behavior or beliefs. 

Psychologists who specialize in psychotherapy base their therapeutic process on theories, research and studies, and ensure that their clinical practice integrates the best evidence-based methods (evidence based practice). Human mind is very complex, and psychological theories and research reflect this complexity.

Human psychology can not be studied as a whole, just as the human body can not be studied as a whole.  If the digestive or circulatory system are studied in medicine in different specialized areas, likewise psychology has various specialized areas for different emotional and behavioral issues.  For example, the following areas of psychological research are important for psychotherapy: development psychology (how people progress throughout life and what characterizes each stage of development), learning and how the brain processes the information, family relationships, interpersonal relations and social behavior.  These fields of study are very useful because they identify common processes, rules and principles that describe how the mind / human brain works in different situations.

For example, psychotherapy changes problematic behavior (such as smoking, procrastination, avoidance) andthinking patterns (like blaming others, self-blaming, negative expectations) of patients by using the results of research of the processes by which learning occurs.

Research on how people respond to their negative thoughts, when they occur, offers effective psychotherapy methods by which people can be taught how to manage and reduce possible negative thoughts associated with emotional discomfort.

Psychological research is ongoing and it seeks to develop specific intervention protocols that make psychotherapy an effective intervention tool in the treatment of emotional or mental health problems.