First Time & Therapy

When it is your first time doing something, there are a lot of unknowns. The unknowns can create discomfort and anxiety. Once someone becomes familiar, it can start to feel more comfortable. New relationships can bring up many different emotions and meeting with a therapist is no exception. If you are considering therapy, keep reading…

If this is your first time in therapy (or if you have been to therapy before but new to CARE Counseling), you may not know what to expect. Checking out CARE’s website can be helpful since it outlines the first few sessions. If you have never been to therapy for more than three sessions, then you likely have not really had a full therapy experience. The first two sessions involve some information gathering. It may feel like there are a lot of questions, but they all have an important purpose to help the therapist understand you and begin to think about interventions that would be helpful. Questions that a therapist will ask includes what brought you to therapy, symptoms and important aspects about yourself such as your identity, your current challenges, your history, and experiences. Working together, you and your therapist will then create a “road rap” of goals to work towards, skills to learn, and/ or topics to process.

The therapeutic relationship is an important element of the therapy process. Sharing intimate parts of one’s story with a professional helper, yet total stranger can feel weird at first, but it also can be incredibly freeing. Coming to therapy for the first time can help offer hope during times of hopelessness. It can bring relief in times of distress, and a sense of peace during times of anxiety. Therapy may be the one time a week where you have a chance to take time for yourself, slow down and breathe. You may begin to experience emotions that you have never felt for the first time. You may cry and laugh, learning about yourself during the process…your values, hopes, and dreams. Therapy can help provide a sense of clarity with important life decisions. Keep in mind that the therapist’s job is not to give you answers but to help you discover what you need.

Therapists at CARE come from various training backgrounds and offer a variety of therapeutic approaches. While the therapist profiles give a glimpse into each therapist’s background, it can be helpful to call to share what you are looking for and our awesome admin team can help you find a good fit. One thing that is great about CARE is that there are over 75 therapists, many who have same week availability!

Therapy is effective with active engagement and consistency. Some presenting concerns may benefit from short-term therapy, while others may benefit from a longer-term therapeutic relationship. When starting therapy for the first time, most clients benefit from weekly therapy for a 3-month period during while time progress and goals are discussed. If you are new to therapy, consider challenging yourself to give therapy try.

Written By: Charlotte Johnson, MA, LPCC

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