Therapy is frequently misconstrued. Therapy, also referred to as counseling, is meeting a professional (usually with an educational background of psychology) to work through emotional or behavioral crisis, difficulties, or even for a regular catharsis or venting out of thoughts and emotions. Choosing to access professional help is usually the biggest challenge for any individual. This is probably because acknowledging the need for professional help is possible only after accepting there is a part of the self which needs external support.
However, therapy is not advice giving.
Therapy concentrates on an individual learning to help themselves through a reworking of behaviours and emotions, so as to allow positive and constructive functioning.
As is well established, each person is unique and has unique needs and expectations. With each individual need, therapy changes.
Therapy is thus, a different experience for each individual.
You might go for therapy alone, with a partner or even with your family. While approaching a therapist, my expectations might be very different than yours. For example, I might want to have a space to just speak non-stop without any judgmental backlash. You, on the other hand, might want a structured goal (of behavior or thought) that you would want to achieve and for this, look towards a professional to bring that order or required change in your life.
Even though therapy might be dynamic from person to person, what remains constant is a space that allows you to set your own unique goal and steps to achieve that. Further, and probably most importantly, a therapy room is a confidential and non-judgmental space. This means what is spoken with your therapist, remains only between you and your therapist. Your therapist does not reprimand you, but supports you through your shortcomings, expectations and even achievements, to reach your goal. Your therapist is a good listener (an excellent one at that!), an able supporter and is a cushion when you want rational feedback on your actions or thoughts. If you are curious about how your first session would be, read the article on “What’s my first therapy session going to be like?”.
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