The Advice No One Tells You About Going to Therapy 

From The Mighty

https://themighty.com/2017/02/tips-for-therapy/

To find out what people wish they knew about seeing a therapist, we asked people in our mental health community to share a piece of advice no one tells you about going to therapy.

Here’s what they shared with us:

1. “Therapy leaves you feeling drained, raw and/or vulnerable. You have to give yourself time after a session to process what was talked [about] and rejuvenate. That could be taking a nap, taking a warm bath, exercising. I find I have to practice the best self-care after my therapy sessions.” –Chaia G.

2. “You [may] have to repeat your story over and over. It starts to not feel real in your own head and you will feel guilty about being there. But remind yourself it’s OK to be asking for help.” –Sasha H.

3. “It’s all about connecting with your therapist. Therapy is not ‘one size fits all.’ It’s important to allow yourself [the] opportunity to make sure you have the best person working with you. Having a trusting and open relationship with your therapist is vital! Don’t be afraid to speak up if you find your therapist isn’t the best for you.” — Lauren L.

4. “You have to be 100 percent honest and if you don’t feel comfortable telling the first few therapists, then it’s OK to change them. Not everyone is a good fit.” –Abigail M.

5. “Therapy takes effort and work.” –Melissa G.

6. “It takes time to see improvement. You need to continue seeing your therapist so they can evaluate your mental state over time.” –Lisa C.

7. “Advocate for yourself. It’s worth it if you work it. You’re worth it.” –Amelia L. 

8. “You [might] feel worse before it gets better. Learn how to ground yourself so you have a safe strong place you can go to within yourself.” — Mandy M.

9. “Therapy is not a one-visit fix.” –Marissa D.

10. “In the beginning there will probably be many times you feel like giving it up because it seems like the easier option. Stick it out though. It’s worth it in the long run.” –Angela E. 

11. “It’s not about laying dramatically on a chaise lounge only talking about your feelings. The therapist is there to help you challenge yourself to be the best that you can be. But it comes with a cost. It can be extremely painful at times and you may feel really bad for a few days reflecting on what was brought to the surface, but then you’ll learn how to heal correctly. You just have to continue going.” — Allyson L.

12. “The therapist is there for you. You (or insurance) are paying for their time. However long your appointment is, that time is yours. Use it to your advantage and talk about whatever you need to. Also, be open and honest with the therapist. That’s the only way it’ll work for your benefit. If you can’t be honest with them, it’s important to know you can find another therapist you’re comfortable with. The first time or first therapist might not be the right fit, but there is one that will be.” — Michelle D.

13. “Building and establishing a rapport with a therapist takes time. It’s like a building a relationship with anybody else. The difference is, however, is that the therapist is an objective voice and perspective to the chaos going on in and outside of your head.” — Sean C.

14. “There’s no shame. ‘Therapy’ can be treated as such a scary word, and although yes, the experience of starting sessions can be daunting, I know, but really, that word should be about how you have every right to be there to help yourself feel better and you shouldn’t feel embarrassed or like a failure for deciding to go. It’s your first step to getting better and the road may be long and challenging at times, but you won’t be alone for the journey.” — Eimear D.

15. “You deserve and have a right to be there. For awhile in the beginning, I was always worried my therapist would tell me my problems aren’t legitimate enough to take her time away from people with real issues that need real help. Your problems are different from everyone else’s, but they’re 100 percent valid and deserve just as much of your therapists attention as anyone else.” — Ashley M.

16. “Even if your first, or second or third therapist isn’t right for you, don’t rule it out. My CBT therapist actually cried in my sessions, while I was explaining my history. She was also very stereotypical in the fact that I mentioned one small disagreement with my mum and suddenly everything wrong with me was my mum’s fault. But my other counselor was wonderful! She did everything she could to help me. What I’m saying is, just because you may have some therapists who don’t mesh with you, don’t rule it out entirely.” — Rebecca B.

17. “You’ll have moments where you doubt why you’re even there in the first place, it leaves you emotionally exhausted and crying, or even completely drained – but it works. There has never been a day when I’ve had therapy and I haven’t felt incredibly safe and supported. It’s crucial to have that support.” — Erica A.

18. “Try to plan an agenda before your session so when you go in, you’re more prepared. Often times, I would be down to the last five minutes and I would just start to bring up something important that I needed to discuss. The therapy 45-minute window goes by quickly and if you have a plan, you’ll feel more satisfied afterwards.” — Alyssa P.

19. “As a therapist, one thing I always hear is, ‘You won’t believe it’s true but…’ or, ‘I feel so ashamed of…’ There is no judgment going into therapy. Each person has their story and no story is alike.” — Jessica C.

20. “Sometimes you honestly don’t know what to say and it’s hard to get across exactly what you want in the time you have. This can sometimes make you feel like you shouldn’t have gone at all because you wasted their time, but you haven’t! They are there to help you.” — Jessica S.

21. “Skip the awkward getting-to-know you crap and get down to business. Their job is to see people at their worst; you’re not going to surprise them. Don’t waste sessions (and money), just jump right in!” — Ashleigh R.

22. “Therapy is about finding your own answers for yourself. You need the time between sessions to discover the answers for yourself, and those answers can lead you in a completely different direction.” — Samantha L.

23. “It’s like a dirty wound. You have to open it up and poor on peroxide and it will hurt so badly you’ll wonder why you’re doing it, but in the long run you were just cleaning it out so it can heal better. Therapy will be difficult but worth it.” — Katie 

 

 

 

This is a great parenting resource for kids of all ages.

Dr. Ross Greene has identified a way of talking WITH your children about problems that allows them to feel like they are part of the solution. 

 

 

Creating Hope for Your Future


Stop feeding your mind thoughts about the past. Forgive those who have done you wrong and forgive yourself too. Start seeding thoughts and actions which will lead to a happier tomorrow.

~ Karen Salmansohn

Don't let the darkness of your past block the light of joy in your present. WHAT HAPPENED IS DONE! Stop giving time to things that no longer exist when there is so much joy in the here and now.

~ Karen Salmansohn

If you want to be sad, live in the past. If you want to be anxious, live in the future. If you want to be peaceful, live in the now.

~ Karen Salmansohn

What are the most powerful words in the universe? The ones you use to talk to yourself!

~ Karen Salmansohn

Hating someone makes them important. Forgiving someone makes them obsolete.

~ Karen Salmansohn

Choose to live each day directed by love and purpose not fear and wounds.

~ Karen Salmansohn

Offer to the world what you want to attract. If you want love, offer love to everyone you meet. Become what it is you feel is missing in your life.

~ Samantha Dyer

You're more than the mistakes you've made. You are the wisdom, strength, compassion and growth you've gained from all you've been through.

~ Karen Salmansohn

Being positive in a challenging situation is a sign of wisdom and character.

~ Lynda Field

Consciously choosing your thoughts allows you to be in control of your mind and emotional state-instead of the other way round!

~ Julie Marah

Don't believe everything you think!

~ Byron Katie

Every thought we think is creating our future.

~ Louise Hay

We wouldn't pay to watch the same painful movie two hundred and fifty times, but somehow, we allow our mind to replay the same bad memory over and over, each time experiencing the same distress and shame.

~ Jan Chozen Bays

Getting over a painful experience is much like crossing monkey bars. At some point, you just have to let go in order to move forward.

~ C.S. Lewis

The worst bullies you will ever encounter in your life are your own thoughts.

~ Bryant McGill

Worry is the darkroom in which negatives can develop.

~ Wanda E. Brunstetter

The way we treat people we strongly disagree with is a report card on what we've learned about compassion and kindness.

~ marcandangel.com

Needless drama doesn't just walk into your life out of nowhere-you either create it, invite it or associate with those who bring it.

~ marcandangel.com

Sometimes you have to tell the negative committee that meets inside your head to sit down and shut up!

~ Toby Mac

People are desperate for a solution as long as they don't have to do anything, change anything, or spend anything.


Anxiety happens when you think you have to figure everything out at once. Breathe. You're strong. You got this. Take it day by day.

~ Karen Salmansohn

Integrity is choosing courage over comfort. It's choosing what is right over what is fun, fast, or easy. It's choosing to practice your values rather than simply professing them.

~ Brene Brown

You cannot force someone to comprehend a message that they are not ready to receive. Still, you must never underestimate the power of planting a seed.

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