Getting the most out of your Therapy
Therapy session can be highly transformative experiences. Providing you with a space to explore your life experiences, therapy enhances personal growth in a fast, safe and supportive way.
To get the most out of your therapy sessions, it is useful keep notes. Treat yourself to a therapy notebook/journal that appeals to you and is easy to use. Some people like paper and pen, while others favor a digital format. Whatever you will use consistently is what you should choose.
Before you even get to your first session, decide for yourself what you want to work on. For example: Are you experiencing anxiety or depression? Perhaps you want to explore past traumas or ways to improve your relationships. Jot down your talking points in a bullet list, or paragraph and bring with you to your session.
Some people jot down words, bullet lists, word clouds, timelines, draw, collage, paste in photos in their journal to help them remember and to focus on what it is important to talk about during therapy. Your journal is your own. No one will ask you to show it, so you don’t have to share it with someone unless you want to. Your journal is your sacred space; care for it in a way that protects you from others finding it.
Additionally, your therapist may offer insights, strategies, or homework assignments. It’s a good idea to keep track of the key points, recommended readings/videos or action items so you can reflect on them later and apply them to your life outside of therapy.
2. BE HONEST & WILLING
Your provider can only understand and develop strategies if you are honest about what is going on
in your life, or what brought you here to begin with. Do not be afraid. You will not be judged.
Creating lasting change is a dynamic process so be sure to tell your therapist what is working for
you and what is not. Honest communication will help us make sure we are meeting your needs in a
dynamic way and creating customized solutions tailored to you and your life.
3. BE OPEN TO COLLABORATION
A customized solution or strategy creates a vision, invites a dynamic process between you and your therapist. Be willing to receive feedback and participate; your engagement in this process creates momentum. Your therapist may introduce new perspectives and coping strategies that could be beneficial to helping you develop action steps toward achieving your goals. This can only be done if you come to your appointments prepared, honest, willing, and on time.
4. APPLY WHAT YOU LEARN
Therapy isn’t just about talking; it’s about taking what you learn in sessions and applying to your every day life to practice and reinforce positive changes. Practicing progress not perfection. To see the impact of your work in therapy review and reflect every 1-3 months. And review your progress with your therapist often updating your goals as needed.
5. BE CONSISTENT & KEEP TRACK OF YOUR APPOINTMENTS
Be consistent and maintain regular attendance. Be on time; punctuality maximized the time you have with your therapist. Work with your therapist to develop a schedule and frequency you can maintain and that is recommended as therapeutic. Whenever possible see if you can select the same time and day each week in order to avoid missing/forgetting your appointments. Consistency helps build a habit and momentum toward the goals you and your therapist have outline.
6. SELF CARE
Self care is key. Outside of therapy, make it your priority to engage in activities that promote your well-being, such as exercise, meditation, journaling, enjoying hobbies/interests and spending time with loved ones. Self-care reinforces the work you do in therapy and enhances your resilience.
No matter how big or small, progress not perfection is amazing! Celebrate all the milestones and boost your motivation and self-esteem.
Getting the most out of your therapy is about being and active participant, being open to learn and improve communication skills and developing patience with yourself and others. Plan for your success; failure to plan by setting clear goals, being honest and applying what you learn can make the journey harder. Instead, remember therapy is a collaborative process, your commitment to self-improvement and your honesty with your therapist play a crucial role in your success. Embrace growth and you will find therapy a powerful tool for improving the quality of your life, your relationships and your overall well being.