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Therapy Myths

Updated: Jul 26, 2023

Although therapy continues to become more accessible and less stigmatized, there are still a number of false ideas that may prevent individuals from seeking the support they need, when they need it. It’s helpful to dispel some of these myths in order to remove barriers to

seeking help.

Woman looking at ocean

Myth #1: I have to be experiencing severe mental health symptoms to need therapy.

We are all dealing with something challenging and therefore anyone can benefit from therapy. For many reasons, however, individuals may choose not to reach out until their problems do become severe. But what if rather than allowing the problem to worsen over time, we reached out for support to help to prevent the problem from growing? Participating in therapy can help us prepare for challenges that may arise in the future by learning strategies to manage stress, anxiety, and hardships in our relationships.

Rocks balanced atop of each other

Myth #2: I don’t have time for therapy.

Therapy is an investment in yourself, as well as an investment of your time. Adjusting schedules to accommodate appointments can be difficult. However, the goal is not to stay in therapy forever. Typically weekly or bi-weekly sessions will continue for about six to twelve months at a time. At this point, if appropriate, therapy will end or pause but there are always

opportunities to return when and if it’s needed. Telehealth sessions have become the new norm in the therapy world, making sessions easier to access and attend regularly. This medium allows you to participate from the comfort of your home or any confidential space that’s convenient. This shift eliminates the need to factor in commute time and makes consistent participation more realistic.

Hand on watch

Myth #3: I didn’t connect with my first therapist, so therapy just isn’t for me.

Forming a positive connection with your therapist is absolutely essential to making progress. Research shows that the relationship an individual has with their therapist is the most important factor in achieving goals. So what happens if you find a therapist and you’re struggling to feel connected with them? It may take a few sessions to determine if that clinician is the right one for you. Each therapist has their own unique style which is impacted by their training, education, and personality. Not connecting with your therapist is not a failure on either part. If you’ve been matched with a therapist that you don’t feel is the right fit for you, that’s okay. Sometimes it may take more than one referral to find the person who you click with most. Some people may find it helpful to list a few qualities they’re looking for in a counselor before starting their search. Also, clients are encouraged to reach out by phone to therapists via phone before scheduling an initial appointment, to find out more about what type of services they offer and get feel for their personalities. Regardless of whether you connect with the first or second therapist you find, the right one is out there.

Man staring at partner
Focus on you

Myth #4: Therapy will solve my problems overnight.

While therapy can be hugely beneficial for our emotional health and wellbeing, it doesn’t produce miracles. Healing does take time. Some of our problems have taken months or years to develop, so we can’t expect them to disappear overnight. Similar to building muscles through working out, we have to make consistent efforts over time to achieve goals in therapy. This often looks like attending weekly appointments with your therapist, increasing the use of coping skills outside of session, and practicing adopting new perspectives and ways of viewing conflicts in

our lives.

Woman embracing another woman
Not alone

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