Is psychotherapy effective?

As a practicing psychologist in Pasadena, I'm occasionally challenged by my patients to discuss the effectiveness of psychotherapy. "Will I get better? they often query. It's an honest and legitimate question - one I find myself pondering frequently. To my patients, they want to know whether the benefits of embarking on the strange journey toward self disclosure, vulnerability, and potential pain will be worth it. And will I be able to help them? Will paying for my services, my training, and my expertise be enough of a catalyst for healing? The answer is complex and multi-faceted. There's the issue of goodness-of-fit. Research shows that upwards of 80% of the effectiveness of psychotherapy has to do with the fit between patient and psychotherapist but how does one measure that? Other variables that influence the outcome of psychotherapy include such things as the level of participation of the patient, the level of motivation, and how accurately the empathy in the psychotherapist. With all this in mind, however, and the longer I'm privileged to do this work, the more I find that individuals who walk into my office really are seeking a deeper experience of authenticity and empathy and many are NOT looking for the quick fix. For a fascinating read on the effectiveness of longer term psychotherapy vs short term, see the following link: