What You Need to Know Before Starting Therapy

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Ketamine Assisted Psychotherapy

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Considering starting psychotherapy? Not knowing what to expect can be intimidating! For those of you who are new to therapy or are wondering the most effective ways to approach your therapy sessions, here are 3 tips to starting therapy. 

Get Clear on the Problem

First and foremost, we need to get clear on what’s bringing you into therapy. In order to start working therapeutically, you’ll need to understand some of the aspects of your life that are causing a problem. It requires you to think a little more in depth about your presenting problem, even if you don’t know exactly why the problem is here or how to solve it. For example, your presenting issue may be anxiety. Questions to ask yourself once you’ve identified that anxiety is the main problem could be: Why am I anxious? How do I know that I’m anxious? When does the anxiety tend to show up in my life? When does it get better? What about the anxiety is troublesome to the way I want to live life?

It’s alright if you don’t know the answer to some of these questions– it’s not a requirement, but the more data you have available, the more we have to work with! You don’t need to know the solution to the problem (though in some cases, you will). Finding the solution is something you can work towards with your therapist- but first, we need to deeply understand what the problem is. 

Choose the Right Therapist For You 

This is one I can’t stress enough. I say it on every consultation call I have with potential clients, regardless if they’ve been in therapy before– it is so important you choose a therapist you can connect with. You can assess this based on their website/bio, their specialties, their personality, and also the way they see the healing process in therapy. Once you and your therapist have established a connection, you will start to tell them your innermost thoughts and allow them to see you in a way that we don’t allow others in our lives to see us. This requires high levels of trust! If for whatever reason you do not connect well with your therapist, it will become a lot harder to trust the relationship between the two of you. That could mean it’s either harder for you to open up fully to your therapist, or that it is difficult to deeply consider the input your therapist is providing for you. Either way- it means your therapy will become inefficient, which is the opposite of what we want if we are looking to heal. 

Don’t Rush the Process

This is a good place to level set expectations. Therapy takes a while– months, at minimum. This is because in most scenarios you are meeting weekly for an hour long session, and there is a lot of ground to cover in that time. Your therapist is working to understand the way you orient and operate within the world, while also providing you a foundation towards healing and growth. Clients can see improvements in their mood or behavior within one therapy session- however, this is a surface-level improvement. This is the equivalent of putting a bandaid on a wound. Will it help? Yeah! Does it actually heal the wound itself? Well, no. What I see happening so often with life coaches or programs that advertise a set amount of time before growth (ex. “3 month program!”) is that they are focused on the superficial level of healing. Therapy, however, can provide not only the quick and effective coping tools to use in a situation, but also goes into the reasons why your life has been arranged in such a way that we need the coping tool to begin with. This allows us to heal the originating cause of the problem. 

Therapy can be a wonderful resource to not only help us to heal, but to get to know ourselves on a deeper level. Understanding the expectations for therapy in advance can help you to determine if psychotherapy is a beneficial choice for you. 

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Hi, I'm Marci. Therapist to Free Spirited Humans Looking for More.

Your number one hype girl, the door opener of weekly meetings with the highest version of YOU, and a trusted professional offering a sacred experience of meeting - and being seen - in your wholeness.  

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What You Need to Know Before Starting Therapy



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