Getting it Together Through Transference-Focused Psychotherapy

Life’s ups and downs are perfectly normal, but if you have people telling you to “Get yourself together” on any kind of regular basis, then it might be time to look in to a very specific type of treatment, transference-focused psychotherapy.

This is most commonly used to help those with borderline personality disorder, which can include feelings and emotions that often come and go in rapid succession. Moods can swing from euphoria to depression, similar to bipolar disorder, except that the changes are abrupt and short lived but still very intense.

A bipolar person will experience high and low states for much longer, generally they will last from several days to even months.

Borderline personality disorder patients often feel anxious and nervous, which can lead to all sorts of harmful and impulsive behavior such as substance abuse and uncontrollable gambling or spending. Sometimes it may result in multiple personalities appearing, or a high risk of suicide. This is why it is so important to get treatment as soon a s possible.

That is where transference-focused psychotherapy comes in, it is typically a very well-structured therapy that meets twice a week to work on the patient’s internalized contradictory beliefs.

The therapist’s goal is to help the individual rectify any separate identities they may have, in order to develop a standard system of relating to the world. One way to go about this is to challenge some of the false conclusions that the patient has come to believe as facts.

The first step is to make sure that the they can clearly express their specific thoughts so as to define what they mean. It is important to describe these so it can be shown how they affect the individual in their day-to-day life.

The therapist can then build on this and hopefully bring the varied ideas and views into agreement with one another. This usually takes quite some time because it is a difficult proposition to change someone’s feelings about themselves. This means that a solid relationship needs to be formed between the therapist and the patient allowing for open discussions and the possibility to continue to challenge ideas.

Of course, it is good to remember that all types of therapy can take some time. This is even more true with transference-focused psychotherapy because the focus is on long-term goals and strategies rather than the short-term success in some other forms of therapy.

Success means helping the individual to reduce any risky or dangerous behaviors that they had been involved with, while learning to control themselves and form stronger, better relationships. Once that is accomplished, they can begin to work toward the goals they have set for their lives.

Obviously, this process can be time consuming and might create problems with people’s schedules, but luckily, as we discussed in this prior article, can help facilitate this, or almost any type of therapy, completely online.

We all have preconceived notions about psychotherapy, especially those of us with a few years under our belts, but much of what we think we know is just no longer the case. These days therapy is much more relaxed than the stereotype we have in our minds from movies and television.

And as we said, getting it together no longer needs to take place in a room with a couch, anywhere with WiFi will do.

David & Veronica,

For more about and their programs, please see these previous articles we have shared on

Some Observations about Online Therapy

Anxiety is Almost Unavoidable These Days

Don’t Let the Cost Stop You from Seeking Help

Exploring the Different Types of Therapy

Identifying Problems in the Present with Cognitive Psychotherapy

Examining the Role of Geriatric Psychiatry as our Loved Ones are Aging

Analyzing the Information in Psychiatry Articles

Artistic Expression as a Part of Art Therapy

Ever Wonder Why Therapists Take Notes?

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