What to Expect From Your First Few Sessions

Thank you allowing CARE to be apart of your journey. We recognize the decision to go to therapy can be very difficult and our team wants to support you as much as we can. 

Below is a client friendly explanation of the first several sessions for therapy.  We hope this will be helpful in setting appropriate expectations.  If you have any additional questions please email us at info@care-clinics.com or call us at 612-223-8898, option 1 to speak to a real Minnesotan.

Reviewing Your Paperwork

Please watch the view for an explanation of the new client paperwork you’ll need to fill out prior to your first appointment. If you have any questions please call (612)223-8898 or your clinician can help during your first appointment. 

WHAT IS THE PURPOSE OF THERAPY?

It’s a conversation where you and a trained professional dive into how you are feeling and work to help you learn skills or gain comfort with the elements of your life/health that are hindering your happiness. Realistically, it is going to be weird at first. Therapy starts as a conversation with a complete stranger and you are asked to share the most personal elements of your life; but it gets way better over time as you create a relationship with a professional who is exclusively focused on helping you to improve your life experience by leveraging their years of training.

Pro-tip: most people use the terms therapy, counseling, & psychotherapy interchangeably…we do outpatient therapy which is basically an hour processing with a clinician.

What happens in the first several sessions?

The first few sessions, the clinician is trying to gather information. You’ll be asked some basic questions so that your clinician can get to know you and find out what you’d like to get out of therapy (how to measure it’s helpful to you). You may find it beneficial to share things about your current challenges, past life experiences, or important aspects of your identity. In the second and third sessions, your clinician will help make a “road map” which is a plan with goals or topics that you’d like to focus on in therapy.

HOW CAN I GET THE MOST OUT OF THERAPY?

Therapy only works if you keep doing it. You have to actively participate, show vulnerability, and know that a therapist’s job is to help you find an answer, not give you one. Beyond that, it is important that you discuss how to continue therapeutic growth with your counselor and tell them when things don’t feel like they are working.  For example, we can show you 100 methods to calm down when you are anxious…only 1 has to work.

The magic really starts to happen after you get past treatment planning (third appointment).

Different Kinds of Relationships

As humans, we are wired for connection. As infants, we relied on our caregiver(s) to provide safety, stability, and love. Through attachment, children and adults develop trust and learn to regulate emotions. As children, we learned to socialize through interactions with siblings and other children.

How to Have Difficult Conversations: A Lesson from Non-Violent Communication

Can you think of a recent conversation in which you felt judged, bullied, blamed, or criticized by your partner? Do you find yourself becoming defensive within communication or reacting in anger during difficult conversations, only to feel more disconnected and dissatisfied in your relationship(s)?

When to Let Go: Releasing the Past from the Present

The past is an important part of who we are. Our early upbringing, childhood memories, school experiences, first sexual encounters, relationships, and key decisions that shape our present self. Do you ever feel as if there are aspects of your past that are holding you back to being fully present?

Mental Illness Awareness Week

Sunday October 3rd to Saturday, October 9th is Mental-Illness-Awareness-Week. Did you know that 1 in 5 U.S. adults and 1 in 6 U.S. youth aged 6-17 experience a mental illness each year? For the 1 in 20 adults that experience a serious mental illness each year, less than two-thirds get treatment. Access to quality care is often a barrier.

Clinician Perspective: What Makes CARE Counseling Different

As someone who has previously worked in a corporate business setting, the non-profit world, and a community mental health clinic, I have been exposed to a variety of work cultures. I have seen how the work culture directly impacts mental health, for better and for worse.

What is Relapse and What Does it Mean?

Relapse is the recurrence and worsening of a condition that has previously improved. For individuals who are in recovery, relapse and even multiple relapses are common. Due to the addictive and chronic nature of drug and alcohol dependence, there is not a quick and easy “cure” but rather an ongoing journey of recovery.

You Are Not a Failure: When Relapse Occurs

Keeping in mind that relapse is common, it is so important to remain focused on recovery after a relapse. When relapse occurs during the treatment of substance use disorders, it is an indication that additional support is needed. You are not a failure.

How to Talk About Recovery (If YOU Want)

There is incredible power in sharing one’s story. There are various characters that are part of story. The settings and plot change. There is a beginning, middle, and end as well as elements of conflict and resolution.