Working with a number of new clients recently, I have been reminded of how big a decision it can be to take the first step and ask for help.
Sometimes people believe that they should be able to cope alone with whatever life throws at them. Others feel it is weak or shameful to have to be supported when they are finding things difficult.
I believe that it takes courage and strength to be honest about needing support, it is a positive move forward that may well kick start a process of personal change.
Psychotherapy is not always an easy process, you want to be sure that you are working with someone that is right for you. Feeling at ease and able to speak freely is important, so trust your gut reactions when choosing a therapist. Don't be afraid to ask questions, while they are unlikely to share personal information, your therapist should be happy to talk to you about their qualifications and experience, how they work and what you can expect from them.
Before going to therapy for the first time it is also a good idea to have a think about what you most want to be different as a result of the process. What is it that brings you to therapy right now? What do you want to have happen? What do you think the main issues are? Being clear about what good looks like for you will mean you can make the best use of your time with your therapist and you will get better value for money.
Many clients leave their first session with a sense of relief, feeling unburdened and pleased that they have been heard, without judgement or agenda. Often clients find they are able to share more than they thought they might, and that it is easier than they feared.
If you're ready to talk, have a good look at different therapists and see who appeals.