Skype therapy just means that the client and therapist connect via the online communication app, Skype. Skype accounts are free and easy to use. Sign up takes about five minutes. Communication requires a webcam and stable Internet connection.
Though the client and therapist are not in the same room, they can see and hear each other in real-time. The therapist will connect with the client from a quiet, secure room and the client from the place of their choice (ideally quiet and secure as well).
Skype but not Skype
Skype is safe to use but it is not an encrypted network. So if you prefer, we can use a new HIPAA-compliant encrypted network called PlusGuidance. PlusGuidance was developed specifically for online therapists. It is just like Skype – in that it is free and easy to use – but it adds an extra layer of safety. You send me a message via my website or email and I will send you an invitation to sign up.
Love the convenience..
Meeting your therapist via Skype every week has some great advantages. Imagine on the morning of your therapy session you wake up, get dressed, make a cup of coffee, walk in your socks to your computer and turn it on. Now you are ready for your session. No fighting traffic, no sterile waiting rooms or risk of bumping into other people and often the price of online treatment is less expensive than face-to-face therapy.
Because locality is not an issue, you can choose from therapists worldwide. It makes it easier to find one who you really like. If you have a hectic work schedule or kids to look after, early morning or late at night might be the only time that you have to talk to someone. You can choose a therapist in a time zone that suits your schedule. For example, 6 a.m. in the US is mid-working day in Europe.
Obstacles such as disability, distance, childcare, common language or hectic schedules are alleviated. It’s private and most people can spare an hour a week at home.
But does it work as well as face-to-face therapy?
A mountain of research supports the effectiveness of various forms of online therapy. Over 20 years of scientific studies have established that online therapy can work as effectively as face-to-face therapy.
However, there is debate whether some types of therapy are more suited to online communication than others. For example, goal-focused talking therapies such as CBT are said to translate well to the medium. On the other hand, psychodynamic therapies focus far more on analyzing the client/therapist relationship, observing nuanced body language and nonverbal cues for discussion within the session. Some psychoanalysts question whether this medium can fully accommodate their therapy styles.
A common concern is that Skype is too impersonal for therapy. However, as more of us connect with friends and family via Skype, our comfort levels with online communication increase. Plus high-quality webcams are increasingly inexpensive or standard on most computers and Internet connections are strong and fast enough to accommodate online conversations.
How does it work?
Just like face-to-face therapy, many of us try online therapy because we feel stuck. We’ve asked advice from our friends or family and tried everything that we can think of but nothing seems to work. Or we can’t figure out why we can’t muster the motivation change.
Successful therapy means that the therapist not only helps you get through a difficult situation but also enables you to build resilience, confidence and coping skills to use with a wider range of life challenges long after therapy has finished.
How to make it work for you.
Even though studies have shown that online therapy can work, everyone is different. Therapy is a collaborative effort and one must put one’s trust in the therapist and therapeutic process in order for positive changes to occur. So find a therapist with which you feel you can have a good rapport.