How To find the Right Counselor For you
What to expect at your first appointment.
Are you considering seeking therapy? Have you been searching for counselors in your area that might be able to help you? If so, you are moving in a positive direction to work out any issues you are currently experiencing. Therapy is a delicate subject for some people. While most of us will visit a doctor if we are physically ill, or take our vehicle into a mechanic if it is showing signs of breaking down, some of us will hesitate to see a counselor when our emotional state is out of balance.
Much of this hesitation might be due to the fact that many of us are unsure of what actually happens in a therapy session – and facing an unknown in life can be somewhat frightening. If this will be your first time meeting with a counselor, you might be wondering what he or she will ask you. You may also be curious how much you should reveal about the issue you are experiencing, or how seeking out therapy is different than just chatting with a friend. Let’s take a closer look at what therapy is and who can benefit from seeing a therapist.
Who Can Therapy Help?
There are a lot of misconceptions about who should see a therapist; these myths can make us believe only someone extremely disturbed – perhaps feeling suicidal or hearing voices – needs therapy.
This is far from the truth. Speaking with a counselor can work for so many people who are working through a challenge. This challenge can vary greatly; for some people it will be dealing with a difficult divorce or working through anger issues, while for others it may be learning techniques for dealing with anxiety or chronic illness.
Many successful people have sought out therapy for a number of reasons. Whether you are dealing with the aftermath of an emotional break-up, are looking for ways to deal with work stress, or need to learn stress-reducing techniques to deal with anxiousness, there are many ways therapy can help you.
How Can You Find the Right Counselor?
It isn’t uncommon for people to do research before they visit a physician, and the same holds true for seeing a counselor. A great place to start is by searching “counseling near me” via the Internet. This will give you an opportunity to visit multiple therapy websites in your area. By visiting each counselor’s site, you can learn more about their style of therapy and what specific issues they have experience in. You may find that some therapists work in areas of weight loss or anger management while others deal with grief, illness, or trauma.
Once you find a counselor who seems like a potential fit, you can make an appointment and see how you interact with him or her in person. You’ll know when you find a great fit in terms of therapy; you will feel comfortable opening up to the counselor and you will feel like he or she is invested in helping you work through the issue.
What to Expect in Therapy
When you enter into a therapy session, you are given an open floor where you can safely and discreetly discuss anything going on in your life without fear of being judged or criticized. After a brief introduction, the counselor will offer you time to discuss what is happening in your life and what challenge you are seeking help with. You may witness the counselor taking notes while you are speaking, though some choose to write notes down after the session.
Depending on the life challenge you are facing and the therapist you choose, you may have “homework” after your session. This could be something as simple as meditating or practicing breathing exercises to journaling.
Every counselor-client relationship is unique; no matter which counselor you ultimately choose, remember you are choosing a safe, non-judgmental place to discuss any life problems you are facing with someone who will help you find the right solutions.