Therapy gets a bad rep. Every time I tell someone I’m off to see my therapist people look at me with uncomfortable eyes and with a slight glint of hope that I’m joking.
I’m not joking. I love going to therapy! What could be any better than fifty minutes of talking about yourself to someone who is completely unbiased and wants to help you? It’s fantastic!
Yet there are still so many people who would rather put needles in their eyes than go and see a “shrink”.
Sadly, there is this misconception that therapy sessions are awkward and formal. I blame Hollywood films for seeding the idea that therapy is where people with a “screw loose” go. Although, admittedly I’m a bit barmy, I can speak from experience that therapy is not a thorny affair. Therapists don’t just sit and listen to all of your woes, silently judging you; they offer you advice and solutions to your problems. They help you to see things in a different light and you often leave a session with a spring in your step.
Therapy can also differ from one week to the next. Some days I will go and I’ll actually be having a good week so there’s not much to dissect. Other weeks if I’ve had a panic attack or can’t stop thinking negative thoughts, I’ll chat away until I’m blue in the face. Your sessions are all in your control and you can talk about anything and everything!
I’ve never understood why anyone would not go to therapy or criticise something so helpful. You go to the dentist to help keep your teeth strong. You go to a personal trainer to help keep fit and you go to a therapist to help keep your mind healthy and balanced.
It’s a no brainer really! (Sorry I had the urge to add a pun!)
I’ve learnt a lot about myself since going to therapy. I now understand why I do certain things and why I can feel a certain way if something happens. I’ve learnt to view my issues from another perspective and to not beat myself up if I’m feeling low. I give myself my own time to recover from emotional things and not in the time society says I should. I’ve also realised from my time in therapy that humans are complex. A lot of our actions come from emotion rather than logic. In fact that’s been the best piece of advice ever given to me by my therapist; that’s for sure.
Therapy is worth doing. However I do understand that some people will find one-to-one sessions expensive but there are free classes you can attend too, which are funded by the government in the U.K. There are even apps and online sites where you can chat to a therapist – so it is worth looking at options that suit you.
There’s nothing weak about going to chat to someone about things that are bothering you. If anything, I think it’s a strong thing to do. It means you’re taking responsibility for your feelings and looking to help yourself.
That’s not to say therapy is a walk in the park. It isn’t. Therapy can be an emotional rollercoaster but it can also be your lifeline. And if you find the right therapist, they can help you to become the hero of your own life.