Therapy is an insightful conversation between a professional and their cliënt (s). When there's a mutual connection established based on respect and trust, we can open up to a stranger and speak about what needs to be addressed. We as humans have the natural tendency to want to improve. A therapist helps you by peeling back the layers, seeing them for what they are, and helping you develop mechanisms to handle them.
The length of your therapy will be determined by what's troubling you. For example; resolving a conflict at work will only take a few sessions while dealing with depression could take years of intensive therapy.
There are many forms of therapy as well as many kinds of therapists. The key is to figure out what would benefit you. I'd recommend starting with your doctor who may have more insight into what kind of therapy fits you best.
• Gaining ways to cope with life, trauma, and/or mental health issues.
• You will feel like you’ve been heard by someone who understands where you are coming from
• You will be gaining insight into what certain mental health issues entail and how to handle them
• Going into therapy will help you understand yourself more. You will learn why you have certain traits or why you think a certain way
• You will have more empathy for yourself and you are able to relate and feel empathy for other people
• Starting the healing process and becoming the version of yourself you were destined to be
• Acceptance of self and what you are dealing with
• Have an open mind: a therapy session can often be quite eye-opening and confronting. When met with confrontation, we tend to want to defend ourselves or shut down completely. But certain things have to be addressed, so we can start healing. Therefore try to be as open-minded as possible when having a conversation.
• Mentally prepare yourself: therapy can be very hard. That's why it is important to mentally prepare yourself before going to a session. If you go to therapy right after work or school, I'd definitely recommend planning some time in between.
• Set boundaries: a therapy session is about you and what you want to share. Be open but share at your own pace. If you feel pressured into talking about something you're not ready for, let your therapist know.
• Having a genuine connection with your therapist: connecting to somebody makes it easier to open up to them and to receive information from them. A genuine connection is the basis of a good therapeutic relationship.
• Having a second opinion on diagnoses: sometimes we cling to the first diagnosis we get from a therapist, just to find out years later that we've been wrongfully diagnosed. That's why it's important to get a second opinion, especially if any form of medication is involved.
The biggest problem you might have to deal with is having a faulty therapist. Unfortunately, there are countless stories of therapists who have behaved badly towards their cliënts, are uneducated, biased, or only focused on making money. Continuing with a bad therapist can increase the problems you have. That's why it is absolutely necessary to change therapists if you feel unheard or unsafe. At the first sign of indecency or a bad gut feeling, leave. Luckily, most therapists do exist for the right reasons.
Choosing to go to therapy is a vulnerable but important step you can make in your life. It's a relationship that can influence your life and therefore can be very frightening.
Keep in mind that there's no one out there, who knows you better than you know yourself. Try to feel safe in that notion. Make sure you keep searching for a therapist that fits you. A therapist who can possibly relate to you, and who respects you and your situation. The right one can help you lift the weight that is on your shoulders. Therefore, keep looking.