FAQ Zone Answering Client's Most Common Questions

How Can Therapy Help?

Therapy offers a unique kind of space. It is a safe space in which you can speak with someone who is impartial, who will not judge you, who offers empathy and can help guide you by listening to what is said and what is unsaid. Clients often report just being able to talk and say things our loud as being helpful for processing and understanding.


Therapy however can go beyond this, it can facilitate the courage to explore areas that may otherwise feel threatening, but these can be the very areas that require confrontation because they may be influencing patterns of behaviour that you wish to change. So, in short, therapy can be a liberating experience, it can help you to feel safe enough to work through feelings and lead to insights and learning about yourself, and why you feel as you feel, and do as you do. This can lead to self-awareness, and choice, with the help of your therapist you can learn new ways, this may involve psychological strategies. In this way, therapy can have far reaching effect, improving your experience of your sense of self, your relationships, and your life and world.

How Do I know If I Need Therapy?

People are sometimes advised by people they know that therapy may benefit. They may be struggling with anger, anxiety, depression, or a ‘disorder’. Or it might be because you are feeling stuck in life, or apathetic about it. You may also be struggling with something that has happened, for example, the breakdown of a relationship, or death. Or it could be that you are finding it difficult to cope with trauma. Another reason people might choose therapy is to understand themselves better, for self-improvement.


There are many reasons why someone might decide to seek therapy. Essentially, if you are feeling that you could benefit from healing, growth, or change in your life, therapy may be the best decision you make.

What Is A Therapeutic Contract?

The therapeutic contract is our contract with you and outlines the agreement between you ‘the Client’ and Phinity Therapy. It does not obligate you to therapy, rather it clarifies what you can expect from us, and what we expect from you over the course of treatment, as well as our professional services and business policies. By signing the document, or attending for therapy, you agree to be bound by its terms.

What Is A Therapeutic Approach?

When we mention the words ‘therapeutic approach’, we are referring to a particular model of psychotherapy. Psychologists can view clients through a particular theory, and therefore, lens, in order to understand and make sense of them, and also to determine the kinds of methods they might suggest to work with a particular problem.


Sometimes more than one approach is integrated, and this is known as an ‘integrative approach’. Some popular evidence-based approaches are cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), and psychoanalysis.

What Is An Initial Consultation, And What Happens During It?

The Initial Consultation is a short telephone call, lasting up to 15-minutes. You can conveniently choose a time for our Clinical Lead to call you to discuss your therapeutic concerns, and goals for therapy.


You will be guided through the call with specific questions and advised about the next steps. Please note, you are not in any way obligated to have therapy by booking the consultation. It is simply a chat so that you and the Lead can understand what the issues are, and if we can help.

What Happens After The Initial Consultation?

If we deem our services could benefit you, based on the Initial Consultation, we will send you an Invitation Email within 24-hours of your consultation. This will contain a booking link, enabling you to book your Initial Assessment, or first session. If you believe our services could benefit you, you are welcome to book your first session.


The system will notify us if you do, after which, you will receive a welcome email and your Therapy Contract to guide the next parts of the process. Our aim is to make the transition between initial consultation, to intake, as smooth and easy as possible.

What Happens In The First Therapy Session?

The first session is known as the Initial Assessment. In this first session, your therapist will have some preliminary information about you (from the free initial consultation). Your therapist will introduce themselves and orient you to the session and take any questions you may have about the therapeutic contract, also identifying any concerns you may have.  As this is the first session, your therapist will want to gain a good understanding of the backdrop of your problem, that is, your life in a broader way. So, this session consists of a detailed overview of your life and how you live.


This session may also involve the use of psychometric questionnaires if you are open to their use.  These are diagnostic tools which offer a way to measure by using a score.  They can enlighten to the severity of mood, a particular ‘disorder’, and the impact of these to your life.  The Initial Assessment format is a relaxed question and answer session that enables your therapist to identify any factors in your life that may be relevant to the issues you wish to work on in therapy.  This session may also identify your goals for therapy and the number of sessions you are likely to need, both of which are considered flexible.  There will also be more of an understanding of your ‘treatment plan’, which consists of the type of psychological model(s) your therapist recommends based on their understanding of you, your psychology, and your presenting problem.

What Is The Initial Assessment In A Nutshell?

After the initial Free Consultation, you will be offered an Initial Assessment. This first session entails a discussion about your background information and lifestyle, and completion of initial diagnostic questionnaires, if using. This provides a fuller picture for your Practitioner about your needs.  In some cases, this stage may take a few sessions for a thorough understanding and helps your Practitioner develop an appropriate treatment plan with you. Based on the outcome of this, you may require only a few sessions of therapy, for more complex issues treatment may take months or longer.

What Happens In Subsequent Sessions?

After the Initial Assessment has been completed, your therapist will have a good grasp of your life and how aspects of it might be helpful and not so helpful to the presenting problem.  This context is useful as your therapist helps you to unpack the current issue(s).  Your therapist will guide you over the course of therapy, helping to steer you toward aspects that will be useful for exploration, but also giving you the time and space to lead.


If you are using a strategic therapeutic approach, for example cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), sessions will consist of orienting yourself to the approach by learning about it, and also discussing the kinds of techniques that would be useful for your problem(s).  Whatever the approach used, therapy consists of understanding your problem better, understanding its impact, and the mechanisms that are operating, and maintaining the issue(s).  With awareness and understanding, you are guided toward your goal(s).

What Issues Can Therapy Help With?

There are numerous issues that therapy can help with, please view our issues page to see some of these.

If you have an issue that is not listed, therapy may still be suitable. You can book a Free Consultation to discuss this.

Will Therapy Help?

Therapy may help if you are ready for it. This means that you are aware that sometimes therapy may take you to uncomfortable places, but this is often where deep and useful insight is gleaned.


Therapy requires that you are engaged and active in the process, a therapist cannot ‘fix’ you.  What your therapist can so is help guide you through the issue(s), and help you to move in a different direction, to promote healing, change, growth, and maybe joy – which are necessary for a good life quality.

Who Is Therapy For?

Therapy is useful for many problems, which can be viewed on our issues page.  For example, if you wish to find direction in life, or to improve your current prospects in particular areas of life, therapy could help to clarify things.


Therapy can also help individuals work through mental health ‘blocks’ that are holding them back in some way.  Alternatively, therapy may help individuals gain self-awareness and understanding and learn about themselves, such insight facilitates new and different ways of being.  Therapy may also be used to make sense of one’s life and purpose.

Which Kind Of Therapeutic Approach Should I Choose?

Our issues page discusses the kinds of approaches that are often effective with any given issue, and our services page describes each way of working, or psychological approach (for example, cognitive behavioural therapy, or person centred therapy).  But this does not mean that you must choose the type of therapy at the outset.


The Free Initial Consultation allows you to briefly discuss your concerns with our Clinical Lead, who can offer recommendations.  If you decide to proceed to therapy, you will meet with your therapist who will further discuss the approach(s) you might find helpful.  In addition, the approach you choose can change, if at any point you find it does not suit you or your goals.

How Do I Pick The Right Therapist For Me?

We at Phinity take the work out of this for you.  At your Free Consultation with our Clinical Lead, you will be asked various questions that will help determine who might best suit you, based on your issues, your requirements, and your temperament.  If at any point in your therapy journey, you do not feel you ‘fit’ with your therapist, you can always mention this to the Clinical Lead, who will be more than willing to accommodate your needs.

Do I Need Therapy If I’m On Medication?

Often therapy is recommended in conjunction with medication, as it complements recovery for many.  Where medication may help temper a heightened emotional state, therapy can offer understanding, healing, and coping strategies.  Sometimes this can mean you no longer feel the need for medication – we strongly advise that you speak with your GP and therapist before making any changes to medication.

How Many Sessions Will I Need?

This depends on various factors.  For example, the issue(s) and severity, your ability to be open and engage with the process of therapy, and whether more emerges during your therapy that might benefit further sessions.  If you wish to engage in a particular number of sessions due to financial constraints, this can be discussed at the start and gives your therapist a timeframe to work toward, and an indication of the kind of therapy that might benefit such a timeframe.  You can also agree a specific number of sessions, after which you can have a review.

What Kind Of Professional Should I Choose?

We understand that the various job titles used by mental health practitioners can be confusing.  Please see our blog about these for more detailed information.  Nonetheless, when you have your Free Consultation the Clinical Lead will recommend a particular specialist, if however, we are unable to offer you the services of the kind of specialist you may require, we will offer suggestions.

How Often Should I Attend Therapy?

For momentum, we recommend attending weekly sessions on the same day and time every week.  This ensures that the important work you are doing with us is given consistent focus, attention, and commitment.  For this reason, we only offer weekly sessions.

How Long Is A Session?

A session last 50 minutes.  The first Couples or Family Therapy session can last 75 minutes.  This offers all parties more time which is helpful for the first session/Initial Assessment.

Where Are Phinity Therapy Located?

Phinity are located in a beautiful Grade II Listed building in the famous medical quarter of Central Birmingham.  Our full address is Hagley House, 95 Hagley Road, Edgbaston, Birmingham, B16 8LA. We also offer Online Services for our clients living in other cities and countries.


Regrettably, our Birmingham clinic is currently inaccessible by wheelchair as we do not have ramp access, or a lift in the building.  We do however hope to serve individuals who have mobility problems by offering our services online.

What Are The Opening Hours?

Phinity’s hours of operation are 8am to 9pm, Monday to Sunday.

Is Parking Available?

Hagley House does offer visitor parking; however, this is limited.  There are several low-cost options nearby.  Once you have booked your session, we will provide you a full list of all these options, with directions and addresses.

What If I Am Not Happy?

Your Practitioner will always do their best to serve your therapeutic needs. If, however, you are unhappy for any reason, we encourage you to contact us so we may explore your concerns together and offer options for you to consider.

Is Therapy Confidential?

We will never share your information with a third party unless we have your permission to do so, or unless we are required to do so by law (for example to protect you or others, or if instructed to by a court order).  Thus, although therapy is confidential, there are some limits to confidentiality.  These are clearly outlined in the therapeutic contract which will be emailed to you once you book your first session.  You may also ask about this in more detail at any point.  We also explain confidentiality and its limits at your first session and can answer any questions you may have.

How Can I Leave Feedback?

From time to time, we will invite you to leave a review of your experience with Phinity, this facilitates best practice and care for you and all clients and can be left at any point in your therapy journey. We hope that you will be interested in this and kindly ask that you check your Spam/Junk folder for invitations.

Is In Person Therapy More Effective Than Online Therapy?

Online therapy can be just as effective as in-person therapy and all our therapists have experience of working online.  Some people prefer in-person therapy, so for those clients we would recommend this option.  However, for convenience, some people like to work in a ‘hybrid way’ and use a mixture of both.  Of course, for those who are based further away, online therapy is a great option and has shown great outcomes.  We will always try to accommodate whatever works for you.

What Is The Cancellation Policy?

Our therapists reserve their time for you.  This means that we require at least 48 hours’ notice of cancellation so we can offer your appointment slot to someone else, should you be unable to attend.  Therefore, if you are unable to provide at least 48 hours’ notice, the full session fee will still be charged.  For your convenience, you can notify us of cancellation by either phone, text, or email.

Can I Access The Information You Hold About Me?

If you require access to the information we hold about you, please make your request in writing to: Data Controller, Phinity Therapy, C/O Bluewater Quadrant Court, 49 Calthorpe Road, Birmingham, England, B15 1TH.

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