Starting therapy can be a real challenge for many of us. Sometimes even just the thought of it can be so scary it stops us from trying. We struggle to get the process started. Sometimes we don’t know where to start. Here are some suggestions to help.
A lot of us have friends and family that will try to dissuade us from therapy. “Why pay someone to do what a friend can do- listen to you complain?” Actually, a therapist can do a lot more than just listen, and therapy can help you do much more than just complain about your problems. Therapists can provide guidance from their years of experience dealing with similar issues. They can help you to look at the underlying issues, rather than just your temporary circumstances. They can listen from the perspective of wanting to help you get better. Sometimes our friends have our best interests at heart but because of their own stuff can’t see the bigger picture, and sometimes they don’t actually have our best interests at heart.
Not every therapist is going to be the right one for you. Try different therapists until you find the right fit. Feel empowered to interview them and ask them whatever questions you might have. You can ask what kinds of issues they usually focus on with patients. You can ask what kinds of therapeutic techniques and healing tools they’ve used. For example, do they specialize in CBT? Do they believe in holistic health? Can they help you find a psychiatrist should you need medication? If you feel like a therapist won’t be a good match, or makes you uncomfortable, don’t be afraid to try someone new. Do they talk more than they listen? Do they interrupt you or make you feel unheard or misunderstood? Trust your instincts. Hold out for someone you feel can be part of your recovery team. We often know instinctively when someone is or isn’t a good fit for us.
Ask for recommendations from friends, family, your doctor or clinic, your health insurance, community advocacy organization, help line or referral service. Sometimes when we’re really depressed or actively using, we can find logistical things like scheduling and dealing with insurance very overwhelming. When we can’t get out of bed, making phone calls can feel impossible. Some of us wait until we’re already in crisis to start looking for a therapist, and then it’s even harder to get the process going. Ask someone for help, and then let them help you.
It’s scary to look at our stuff. It can be terrifying. Therapy is meant to help you work through painful things. Be brave and believe in your ability to get better. Believe you deserve to be happy.
Therapy can be hard. Enlightened Solutions wants to help. Call (833) 801-LIVE.
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