When faced with a traumatic experience, like a bad car accident or a slip and fall, all you want is an ear. Friends and families are the first people we turn to; however, they may not always be the best reliable source, and that’s to be expected due to their untrained ear.
Some people may wonder why they should see a therapist when they have caring friends who they can vent to instead. While friends know your history and personality and don’t expect to get paid for their support, you may still want to talk to a therapist about your mental health.
Firstly, a therapy session is completely private. In fact, a reputable therapist is obligated by law to keep it confidential, unless rare emergency circumstances warrant otherwise. You can talk freely without fear of being judged. Maybe there are thoughts and feelings you want to talk about but are afraid that you’ll be embarrassed if you admit it to those you know. A therapist is an unbiased, neutral person who provides a safe space for you to talk openly.
Of course, a friend can give you advice too and share ideas about what they think is good for you. A therapist can help you look inwards to uncover your own solutions and find your own pathway. Therapy does entail some introspection so that the person can feel more empowered about the way they go about life. If you aren’t sure whether it’s time to talk with a therapist, here are signs that it may be time:
- You are having trouble regulating your own emotions
- You are not performing as well at work or school as you would like
- You are noticing changes to your sleep or appetite
- You have found it difficult to build and keep relationships
- You have experienced trauma in the past
- You don’t enjoy everyday activities or hobbies like you used to
- You are in the midst of deep grief
- You want to improve yourself but don’t know where to begin
Furthermore, a therapist is trained to see both your good and not-so-helpful patterns. A therapist can gently address these patterns with you, in addition to learning better communication and coping strategies to deal with life. Therapy is a great way to help people who are facing a hard time in their relationships, career, or family. Your therapist won’t provide all the answers for you, but they can guide you in a way that directs you towards healing, awareness, and a healthier mindset.