You want to be in maximum control of your life. Too many people believe medication is the sole solution to their emotional or behavioral problems. While medication temporarily relieves symptoms when it is in your body, it generally does not “cure” emotional or behavioral issues. Medication certainly can be helpful, sometimes vital, to the treatment formula, but medication itself does not build skills.
If you want to truly conquer the problems you are facing, you must find a professional who will take the time to identify all of the factors that are contributing to your issues. While in medicine the goal is diagnosis, in psychology, a diagnosis is much less helpful. Each person’s psychological problems are expressed through the unique lens of their individual personality. Factors impacting this include developmental, environmental, social, educational, and cognitive factors.
Great psychological detectives will create a cognitive map visualizing how all of the factors contributing to your problems are related to each other. At the end of my evaluations, we review a this “roadmap”, which I draw out on the dry-erase board in my conference room. Clients are given a copy of this physical map as well. This is the kind of tool you need to understand the key factors that need addressing in your life.
Medication can certainly make you feel better temporarily, or even consistently help you feel better. However, even medication that is working at the moment can wear off over time as your body adjusts to it. People can develop a tolerance to certain medications like they develop a tolerance to other substances. Medication can also create unintended side effects, creating new problems.
In contrast to medication, effective psychological assessment and treatment do not create new problems or cause problematic side effects. Over time, I have learned many people think medication is the way to solve their problems because it is “quick and easy” – but they end up realizing medication only gets them so far down the road. They discover through our work together that they have a much larger set of natural resources inside of them, which they can tap into in order to develop a broader, more effective toolbox of skills to overcome their problems long-term.
If you are interested in seeing how expansive my toolbox is, and what scientific methods are available for you to use, please use this link, where you can read about American Psychological Association (APA)-identified evidence-based, scientifically-backed techniques a competent psychologist can use in order to help you become a master of your destiny.