Updated: Apr 3
SO. You're on the fence about therapy. Not sure whether you should give it a shot; don't know whether it's right for you; apprehensive about trying out yet another therapist.
So that's why you're here. You're here to read about this phenomenon: the one that I like to call, the "putting one foot in but keeping the other out." You're checking out websites, looking into therapists, maybe talking to family or friends about this whole idea of sitting down with a stranger to talk about your problems.
First, let me start off by telling you that you're not alone. There are many, many people out there who have toyed with the idea of starting therapy or reaching out to a therapist for ages. Perhaps that's you. There are many, many people out there who have already done therapy - maybe once, maybe for ten years. Perhaps that's you. There are many, many, MANY people out there who know that they are at a point where something has just got to give, but they can't seem to just take that plunge. Perhaps this is you.
The next thing I'm going to say is something that many of my clients often hear: the fact that we're having this conversation, tells us something. Okay; so; we aren't technically having a conversation. BUT, you are here, reading this post. So, the fact that I wrote this post, and you're here reading it, tells us something. It tells us that there is part of you that is intrigued. What's beneath that curiosity or interest may be unknown to you at this point in time; and that's okay. You don't need to have all the answers. Right now, the answer you're searching for is whether you should put both feet in.
There's only one person who knows whether that person is "ready" for therapy - that person. As such, while I (nor anyone else) is in a position to advise whether or not you should try it out or try again, I am more than happy to share the following pieces of food for thought:
The most important element of therapy is the therapeutic relationship. This refers, literally, to the relationship between yourself (the client) and the therapist. When looking for a therapist, ask yourself the following questions:
Could I see myself opening up to this person? Do we share any values? Does his/her website/write-up speak to or resonate with me?
Does this person have a professional license and credentials?
Do I feel comfortable enough to reach out? Or, did I feel comfortable when I did?
Mental health professionals come with different professional designations (and therefore, training). I am a Registered Psychotherapist. Other professionals within the field include psychiatrists, psychologists, social workers as well as counsellors. Educate yourself on what each of these professionals do and don't be afraid to ask questions.
There is no therapist that will have all the answers - and this is something that any good therapist knows, respects, and keeps you aware of. Because you are the one who has lived and is living your life, YOU are the expert of your life. With this, you can (and should) expect your therapist to help and guide you throughout your journey (of learning, understanding, and changing); but ultimately, you ought to remember that you are the one that has the answers. You probably just need a little help sorting through yourself to find them. That's what a therapist is for; and what the well-suited therapist will do.
You have to be not only willing, but ready, to change. Otherwise, what's the point? Is it worth putting time, money, emotion and energy into something if you're not really committed? Probably not. So, it's worth asking yourself whether or not you're actually ready for change; and furthermore, taking that question one step further to ask yourself whether or not you're willing to do the work - meaning, whatever may be necessary in order to create that change.
Hopefully this post gave you something to think about - beyond just thinking about whether or not you should "do it" or "try it again."
Really and truly, therapy can be a great experience. It's a pretty cool journey, when you think about it - to have a non-judgmental, un-biased person that you can talk to, vent to, and work through a variety of problems with. Therapy should be a safe and comfortable space - one where you are encouraged to explore and grow; to become the best version of you that you can be.
You can read more about psychotherapy and the services that I, as an RP provide, in the ABOUT and SERVICES sections.
If you have any more questions, you are more than welcome - you are encouraged - to reach out to me to seek the clarification that you need.
Whatever path you take, I wish you an awesome journey.
With warmth and understanding,