Life is fraught with jarring events that can turn your world upside-down. The public need for counselling services has become more prevalent during the current pandemic that has claimed the lives of thousands of people’s family members and friends. If this is the first time you’re seeking mental health services, here are some tips to help you avoid common misconceptions and pitfalls.
1. Choosing a therapist
In the beginning, seeking therapy comes with some choices that the patient needs to understand. There are different types of therapists and different approaches to therapy. If you are seeking counselling so that you can talk about stressful life events, you should look for a psychologist or licensed therapist. If you have been referred due to possible mental illness, you will probably need to see a psychiatrist who is authorized to prescribe medications and is a medical doctor. If you would like to find more information, check out Symmetry Counselling Services and learn from their available resources.
2. Don’t expect immediate results on the first visit
The first time you visit your therapist, you are not likely to make a lot of progress in solving your mental health issues. The first session is likely to consist of some paperwork, and it’s a time for you and your therapist to gauge the kind of chemistry you might have together as the relationship develops.
3. It’s safe to reveal personal details
It’s understandable for people to feel hesitant about sharing personal details, but a licensed therapist is sworn to keep everything confidential. It’s in your interest to be as forthcoming as possible about life circumstances that are causing stress and harming your mental well-being. However, the therapist is also duty-bound to inform authorities if you have intentions to hurt yourself or other people.
4. Ask questions
Therapy is a learning experience, so you should not feel any hesitation in asking the therapist questions about the process. Feel free to contact the therapist prior to the first session so that you know what type of counselling services are offered and learn what paperwork steps are involved. You could ask what to expect in your first session with the therapist.
5. Therapists are there to help
If you’re feeling nervous about talking with a stranger about personal things, try to keep in mind that the therapist is trained to help and be empathetic. Therapists do their best to help ease your suffering, and you will usually find that being open and forthcoming will result in a feeling of relief after the session.
6. Recognize that this takes courage
If you’re suffering from some painful life situations, taking this step is a valid reason to give yourself a pat on the back. It takes courage to seek help and reveal your problems to a person that you don’t know.