Why Therapy? by Amanda Crusen
“It could always be worse.”
“I’m not struggling as much as someone else may be.”
“I’m just overreacting.”
“I’m just being too sensitive.”
“I just need to get over this.”
“I should be able to handle this.”
“We’re all in this together!”
Do any of these phrases sound familiar? While they help us to cope, too often they also discredit and invalidate our struggles, causing us to put them off or not deal with them at all. They are frequently the things we tell ourselves that keep us from reaching out to others. But what if instead of shrugging off our struggles, we could face them? What if being brave didn’t have to mean facing things alone, but rather, with a friend? What if instead of convincing ourselves that we can manage, why not just simply ask for help?
Mental health and self-care are overlooked as part of our overall health, yet therapy and mental health are an integral part of self-care. A healthy mind makes for a truly healthy you, because if your mind isn’t healthy, this is going to affect every other part of your life: job performance, friendships, relationships, your ability to parent your children, and even your physical health and well-being.
Let’s take a moment to acknowledge that these “unprecedented” 18 months have taken a toll: adjustments, transitions, isolation, cancellations, and so much more. After the year we’ve all been through, more than ever, therapy may be helpful for you and your loved ones. Finding a good therapist may help you go from just surviving and coping, to being able to more fully embrace your life and your experiences.
People choose therapy for a number of reasons. Some of these may include:
Depression: Some experience situational depression or seasonal depression, but others may have struggled with depression symptoms for as long as they can remember.
Anxiety: Not being able to cope with or handle things as you once could; feeling over whelmed or scared for no particular reason. Feeling nervous or fearful about situations that are benign or should be something we can handle.
Setting Healthy Boundaries: So many find it challenging to set parameters at work, at home, and with family members. This may be your struggle if you have a difficult time saying “no” or tend to be a people-pleaser.
Problem Solving: Getting an objective outsider can help you to see a problem from another angle and help to solve the problem.
Life Transitions: There are so many various transitions in life, learning how to adjust to something new: a new job, a move to a new city, a new baby, a new home. Even positive change scan be stressful.
Dealing with difficult family situations and relationships: Families have rich and diverse histories. Every emotion can be experienced here. For some, family life and childhood memories are happy and safe. For others, family life is, at best, strained. When relationships are dysfunctional and family get-togethers cause dread, therapy can help you deal with these situations.
Work Stress: Work can be stressful in general, but many careers can be fraught with trauma. Unfortunately, this trauma can be considered as “just part of the job.”
This list is not exhaustive. Other struggles like stress, past trauma, parenting difficulties, grief, or Postpartum Depression can all be helped with therapy. So what do you do if you would like to find a therapist?
How to Find a Good Therapist for You
Seeking therapy is a brave and strong move. Confiding personal and private things to a complete stranger—things you may have never told anyone else—is hard and requires vulnerability. You have to find someone you trust.
- Ask your friends, just like you would ask a friend for a hair stylist recommendation.
- www.psychologytoday.com offers profiles for therapists in your area, detailing their biographies, specialities and appointment hours. This service is free of charge—just type in your zip code and options will be shown.
It is important to understand that not every therapist will be a good a fit for every person—you may have to see a few to decide if a certain therapist is a good fit for you. And if you’ve had aless than favorable experience with therapy in the past, I hope you are willing to give it another try.
Have questions or comments? you can send in your thoughts to [email protected].
DISCLAIMER: The opinions and advice found in this article are based on this writer’s experience. When necessary, talk with a medical professional before making decisions about your personal health. Neither Amanda Crusen nor Construction Beauty Magazine are responsible for any choices made based on this article.