How long have you been thinking about therapy but haven’t moved forward because you can’t overcome your counseling concerns?
Perhaps you’ve picked up the phone to schedule a consultation. Or filled out a few contact forms? But you still haven’t managed to follow through. Why?
Are you afraid, intimidated, suspicious of the whole process? Perhaps the idea of sharing the pain or distress you feel seems impossible right now?
You aren’t the only one, you know. Anxiety about therapy is nothing new. And it’s nothing to be ashamed of. It’s also not something that you have to let keep you from healing and moving forward.
You can overcome your counseling concerns. You can make the changes in your life that you long for. Consider these tips to overcome your counseling concerns simply to be the beginning of that journey.
Push Back Against the Stigma of “Professional Help”
If you’re worried about what people think, it’s okay. We’re all hard-wired to belong, to seek community and connection. You may be worried that others will see you as defective, unworthy, or unable to contribute if they know your struggles.
The truth? Mental health stigma is real. There will be people who think you should tough it out, keep your pain inside, or question your need for therapy altogether. But keep in mind, other peoples’ opinions, conclusions, and judgments are not your priority right now. Your priorities are your mental stability, emotional safety, and ultimate happiness.
Surrendering to stereotypes and stigmas will only make you feel worse. You deserve more. You deserve the time and support that counseling offers.
Resist the Urge to Frame Your Mental Health Needs as “Weakness”
Counseling and therapy is a form of mental and emotional training. It helps anyone who wants to understand themselves, the patterns that shape their lives, and the way they respond to others. Counselors teach and guide. You aren’t weak to seek those things, any wise athlete, leader, or dreamer does the same.
Creating relationships with people who have the tools you need helps you see the world differently and move forward more productively. It takes someone with inner strength to reach out.
Embrace the Idea that What Makes you Different Doesn’t Disqualify You
Identity is a loaded word. And, depending on who you are or how you identify, you may have experienced a lot of challenges as a result. Counseling may bring with it fear of judgment and misunderstanding. You may worry that there’s no way you’ll be heard or accepted. You may feel too unsafe in life generally to imagine feeling safe with a therapist who barely knows you.
One of the best things about a safe and compassionate therapist is that they offer a safe, reliable, unbiased space to work on yourself. They will ask you questions but the goal is to help you work things through. They won’t judge your culture, sexuality, background, or preferences.
The bottom line? Your therapist is a fellow human being, focused on helping you shed shame and remove any obstacle that prevents you from tapping into the best of yourself and your goals.
Allow that Awareness and Acceptance Make all the Difference
If you’re reading this, you are well on your way to overcome your counseling concerns. You know that you need to make a change.
You’ve acknowledged your concerns for your health and are looking for answers. Recognition is a powerful first step to claiming control, new direction, and purpose. Accepting that you have obstacles to tackle makes you more ready and able than avoidance and rumination.
Share what you know about yourself (and what you wish you knew) with your therapist. This starts a process of exploration and examination of old hurts and new insights. You’ll be better for it because you have an experienced guide.
If you’ve been stuck, suffering, or simply longing for an internal change, seize the moment. Please read more about anxiety therapy and reach out soon for a consultation. We are ready and waiting to hear from you.