Every now and then, all of us fall on hard times. Life is rarely a walk in the park all of the time, and it is not uncommon to have to ask for extra help from others. Sure, our friends and family are there for us most of the time and ready to offer support when needed, but often that’s not enough.
Although professional counseling and therapy are getting increasingly normalized, there is still a stigma surrounding them. Many people are hesitant to reach out and contact specialists to assist them by solving their problems. The reasons for this can be as diverse and complex as the problems themselves. Read a first-person account of some of them by check out this link.
Why do people resist going to therapy?
It’s never easy to take that first step when you are feeling down. Many people think that admitting they couldn’t solve their own problems is a weakness. Additionally, an alarming number of them also believe that their issues are too small or minor to “bother” someone else with them. However, this is a slippery slope. If we refuse to learn the tools of how to solve our problems, even the minor ones, later on, we won’t know how to work out the big ones.
This hesitation to look for a professional also ties into fears of being judged and shamed. In fact, we often compare our lives to the lives of others and get the impression they are doing better than us. But the reality is, we only have a limited perception of what their lives are actually like. You can never know for sure if someone is struggling inside or if they have also reached out for help from a specialist before!
Others, on the other hand, are scared of revealing all of the secrets and intimate details of their life to a complete stranger. This is completely normal. After all, the reason why we ask for advice from our family and friends is that they know us and our lives so well. But you shouldn’t worry about that! Professional counselors like the ones at Skylark Counselling Vancouver Counsellors, among others, are trained to be considerate and confidential.
Lastly, a frequent obstacle preventing people from seeking therapy is the effect it might have on their personal relationships. Our problems very rarely involve just us, and our lives are interconnected with the people around us. So, if the issue turns out to stem not from ourselves but from our partner, friend, or parent, this can be very painful to accept. Many are scared to face the truth and go through with the hard choices that could resolve their troubles.
How to make the right choice?
With all of those obstacles out of the way, it is time to cover how do you know you have made the right choice for a therapist. Finding the right one can be surprisingly difficult. Not because of their unprofessionalism or anything similar, but because of all the different approaches they take! Your first association for counseling is probably Freud and the famous therapist-couch visual, but that’s less common than you think.
Regardless of their therapeutic approach, there are some key elements that every treatment should contain. Click here for more. First and foremost, the method they follow should be evidence-based and scientific, treating your growth and healing as a calculated intervention. This includes creating goals and hypotheses, as well as collaborating on action plans based on credible literature, which will lead to achieving your objectives.
Secondly, your counselor should not be your friend but your experienced guide in solving your problems. Yes, chemistry and trust are important, but it is crucial to keep a professional distance between the client and the therapist.
This prevents the client from developing something called “transference,” developing feelings and desires towards an authority figure, in this case, the counselor. You can read more about it on this link https://www.psychologytoday.com/intl/basics/transference.
Another vital component of a successful psychological treatment is encouraging independence. While your therapist is there to direct you, at the end of the day, it is you who have to make the hard choices. The ambition of every counselor is to teach you the tools you need to succeed in resolving your issues in the future by yourself.
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