What Do I Talk About in Therapy?

If you are considering therapy for the first time and wondering what-to-talk-about-in-therapy, or maybe you have been in therapy for a while but not sure what you should be talking about, then this is for you!

Talk about what is on your mind in the moment

First, there is no “right” or “wrong” thing to talk about in therapy. Many people will use the space to process what is going on in the present. If you do not find this an effective use of time, continue reading…

Talk about your goals

By the 3rd session, you and your therapist will discuss what your goals are for therapy. Talking about your goals each week is a good way to stay accountable and make progress in therapy. Please ask your therapist to remind you of your goals if you do not know what these are.

Take notes throughout the week of areas to address

Many individuals find keeping a journal in-between sessions to be helpful. The journal can be brought into session to jot down things that resonate with you in therapy as well as write down homework to do before the next session.

Talk about your relationships

If it is difficult to directly talk about yourself, then talking about your relationships may be a great place to start! Our relationships impact so many areas of mental health, so exploring relational themes in relationships may be for you.

Explore thoughts and feelings

Thoughts and feelings are classic areas to talk about in therapy! Your therapist can utilize a variety of therapeutic interventions to help explore emotions and work with your thoughts (whether they be in the past, present, or future). Your therapist can help you develop a “feelings vocabulary” to put feelings into words.

Talk about the areas that are avoided or bring discomfort

Topics that bring shame or discomfort and are therefore avoided are ones that are safe to talk about in therapy. Sex? Compulsions? Trauma? Insecurities? These are just a few topics that come up frequently.

Maybe there is something that you have not talked to others about because you found it to be insignificant. These things matter in therapy. You matter and whatever you want (or do not want) to talk about also matter!

The Client-Therapist Relationship

This can be difficult to bring up but can help when there is a lull in treatment. Sometimes it can take time to build trust. Sometimes you may not feel like there is a good fit, for whatever reason with your therapist and would like to consider meeting with someone with a different approach. Perhaps you have been in therapy for a while, and you are ready to wrap up the therapeutic relationship and discharge from treatment. These are important topics to initiate in therapy.

Finally, if you are searching for things to talk about in therapy then maybe a moment of silence may be helpful.

Written By: Charlotte Johnson, MA, LPCC

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