1. It gives you coping strategies
A big part of gaining stronger mental health is coping with stressful or anxiety-filled situations. This could range from situations that bring back feelings from past traumas, losing a loved one, or simply going to a family gathering or holiday. As you talk through these situations, a therapist will help break down the different aspects of the situation and help you describe how it might affect you and what you should do next.
2. It helps you manage your own behavior
Similarly to coping strategies, during a stressful situation, the therapist will coach you on your response which is the behavior you exhibit. They will explain what is the appropriate response and what is not.
3. It gives you perspective
When explaining your traumas or your difficult conflicts, your therapist can explain to you the other factors contributing to the situation that you do not see due to your current strategies or state of mind. A therapist may be able to explain why people in your life are responding in a certain way or how you are really affected by the situation physically or mentally.
4. It gives you someone that will reality check you
There are always times in our lives when we feel like we are surrounded by people who think we are crazy or that do not understand, no matter how much we explain it to them. In fact, we might not be able to find anyone in our life who doesn’t think that. Sitting down with a therapist and explaining your perspective may change that feeling. They will be able to validate your feelings and understand on a deeper level where you are coming from, therefore making you feel normal and not crazy.
5. It helps you create a narrative when you can’t find one
As they say, it is difficult to see the forest through the trees. When you are stuck in the detail and stress of your day-to-day life, you can often feel like much of its meaning has been lost and you cannot string together life’s happenings to create a purpose. A therapist will help you see the bigger picture and string together a positive and realistic narrative to tell yourself when you feel lost in the weeds.
6. It gives you an unbiased listener
Yes, they will give you a lot of good advice, but sometimes we just need them to listen, and that is what they do as well.
No one is perfect, and your therapist knows this. If you come to sessions prepared, you will get the most out of them. You will leave feeling empowered. Just like I tell my clients, you need to work as hard on yourself and your progress as we are, or else nothing will change.