The Center for
Cognitive Therapy

Psychodynamic Therapy

Psychodynamic Psychotherapy is a more traditional form of psychotherapy with a primary focus on gaining insight into unhelpful patterns. Derived from the work of Sigmund Freud, this psychological theory has since evolved to better fit a more contemporary understanding of the human mind. A psychodynamic clinician will challenge clients to reflect on ways one’s past experiences impact current behaviors, significant relationships and overall adjustment, often outside of their own awareness. For example, the clinician will often encourage patients to reflect on early relationships with primary caretakers, as these early relationships can become “templates” for future ones. A psychodynamic psychotherapist believes that by bringing these patterns into full awareness, one will explore and choose more fulfilling ways to think, behave and feel. Psychodynamic psychotherapy is generally considered to be a longer-term type of therapy compared to other therapies, although clients often report a deeper level of change and understanding of one’s self.