When someone breaks an arm or leg, the first action that typically follows includes visiting the emergency room for triage and immobilization. When someone encounters mental fractures, swelling, and bruising such as depressive, panic, or even dissociative symptoms, they may be more likely to suffer in silence for various reasons—including stigma-related fear. However, suffering doesn’t have to be the final verdict. Recovery and healing are crucial, and your mental health needs some triage too!
Today’s the day. You’re finally ready to show your mental health some love and tackle the daunting task of exploring and weighing options. As you scroll endlessly though therapist directory profiles, you slowly begin to realize that having too many options isn’t necessarily a desirable scenario for someone who is already equally keyed up and skeptical about ‘telling all of their business to a stranger’.
After days of sorting and saving, you’ve finally found a therapist who speaks to you and your therapeutic needs. Nearly one hour flies by before your dream therapist responds to your initial appointment request.
Suddenly, reality hits you, second and third thoughts float to the surface of your conscious mental process, and it finally ‘gets real’. Contemplation is real too, but it can be surpassed.
If you’ve recently decided to commit to therapy and abruptly experienced ‘cold feet’, here’s your chance to gradually warm-up to the idea of building ‘mental wealth’, as well as learn how to trust the therapeutic process before it begins and embrace uncertainty:
- Weigh the Outcomes: If you’re contemplating therapy at this very moment, I invite you to engage in this brief reflection activity and notice any new perspectives and emotions about therapy that may emerge afterwards. Feel free to consider and write responses for each of the following categories:
Benefits of Starting Therapy Consequences of Avoiding Therapy
- Look into your Mirror Ball: Envision your future. Picture the abundance of growth and healing experiences that may arise during and after therapy. Perhaps ask yourself the following questions and let you imagination run its course:
Where would I like to see myself 5 years from now?
How could therapy help me get to where I aspire to be in life?
Disclaimer: By no means is therapy a quick fix, magic wand, or genie lamp that resolves all of life’s challenges or grants wishes and miraculous outcomes. However, therapy can equip you with additional combat tactics and armor to help you defeat stressors or claim a new, internal territory of peace. It’s up to you to actually learn and apply the tactics in order to increase your chances of declaring victory.
- Build your Mental Wealth: Therapy doesn’t have to be a long-term commitment. It centers on your presenting concerns and needs, and it’ll always be an option—even if you change your mind after getting ‘cold feet’. Throughout your therapeutic journey, you may even work with several therapists. Although these shifts may feel draining and frustrating, you can view them as opportunities to collect a plethora of therapeutic tools comparable to gold or even rare diamonds. If you combine this wealth with your inherent strengths and resilience, life’s challenges won’t stand a chance or leave you feeling bankrupt more days than not.