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A Few Things You Should Know before Starting Your Therapy Sessions

>> May 30, 2018

More and more people are realizing the importance of going for therapy, and this is very encouraging. A few years back, there was a lot of stigma surrounding therapy and mental health issues. However, people have realized that just like you need a doctor from time to time when your body is not okay, so do you need someone to ensure that your mental health is always in check. Shying away from the topic of mental health does not do anyone any good; not the people with mental health issues, and certainly not the community at large. If you have decided to go for therapy for whatever reason, you may be wondering how to choose a therapist, what is expected of you, and what to expect during therapy. Here a few things you should know before you start your therapy sessions.
image: pixabay.com/en/consulting-mental-health-health-1739639/
1.   Referrals do not always work
Just like doctors have specialties (you cannot go to an orthodontist if you have problems with your eyes, and vice versa), so do psychologists. So while your friend might have had a great experience with a certain therapist, he/she might not be of much help to you if he/she does not specialize in whatever issue you are dealing with. Take your time to do some research in order to know the kind of therapist you need. This will help you get the best shrink for your needs. You can ask your primary care doctor for referrals, but only pick a therapist who specializes in what you are dealing with.

2.   Therapy can be uncomfortable
You will essentially be laying your mind bare before someone else. Being human, this is bound to scare you. This is why therapy can be uncomfortable at times. However, sometimes you will be looking forward to your therapy sessions. Just as it is with workouts, when you see the progress you have made, you will be encouraged to keep going for your therapy sessions no matter how difficult it seems. However, if your sessions are unbearable and your therapist’s approach does not seem to be working for you, speak up. You can always look for another therapist to work with if yours is not willing to change his/her approach, or you just don't seem to click.

3.   Take it easy
You might feel pressured to go into each session with a big topic to discuss, but this should not be so. It is the therapist’s job to ensure that each session is productive; he/she will always have questions for you. You just need to show up and cooperate.

4.   Speak up if you disagree with your therapist
If you do not agree with your therapist, do not be afraid to speak up and tell him/her what you think. If your therapist gives you an assignment, say journaling, but you know you do not particularly enjoy doing that, you can ask him/her to give you something different to do. If you do not speak up, you may end up coming to your next session having not done the assignment, and this slows down your progress.

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