Take the Plunge –
Call someone. Many people are interested in getting help but talk themselves out of making the call. This is a hard step.
Give Yourself Options–
Make a commitment to yourself to visit at least two therapists. Every therapist has a different style. If you see two or more, you will feel confident that you have made an informed choice.
Think of it as an Interview –
During the first session, ask questions! Some things you might be curious about include: the therapist’s theoretical orientation, the therapist’s cancellation policy, and additional techniques a therapist might use to help you meet your goals.
Trust your intuition –
When you think a therapist is a good match for you, they probably are. The same is true if something feels a little off. Don’t talk yourself into seeing someone because they are located closer to your house or have a cheaper rate if they don’t feel like a right fit. Choosing a therapist based on more superficial appeal, like proximity, will actually cost you more in the long run, because the therapy will be less affective.
Go to Your Second Appoiintment –
Identify the difference between your intuition and your fear. If a therapist makes you feel comfortable in the first visit, but you find you’re talking yourself out of going back, it might be because you are scared. The good news is you are in therapy! A good therapist will allow you to process these thoughts and make sure that the timing is right for you. Give it a second try.
Look for warning signs –
A therapist who is defensive, who talks about her or himself a lot, who creates an environment not conducive to seriousness, or who shows up late might spell trouble. A good therapist will allow you to set the tone and mood of your sessions, and be open to whatever you are bringing into the room that day. If any of the above warning signs are present, it could mean you won’t get that type of treatment.
The Three Month Commitment –
For three months, fight those urges to quit. This will give the therapeutic process a fair chance, and allow for your relationship with your therapist to grow. Therapy itself will take longer to help you meet your goals, but three months will give you ample time to become comfortable with the process and your therapist.