Attending a therapy session requires a lot of preparation, especially when it is your first time. Counseling sessions help you to navigate through hard and challenging life moments successfully. Despite the good things you can reap from attending a therapy session, preparing for it is essential. This article will help you learn how to prepare for a therapy session.
Below are ways how you should prepare for your therapy.
1. Have Goals
As you plan to attend a therapy session, have goals to guide you through the process. Come up with what you intend to gain at the end of the sessions. For beginners, start by understanding what made you opt for counseling. Visualize and imagine the desired person you want to become. Make the whole process focus on the new you. Identify some manageable and achievable goals.
However, in case you’ve attended a therapy session before, then it is time to put your energy and focus on the things you happily enjoyed doing or listening to during your last session. Give attention to what seemed to work. As for what didn’t work, evaluate the source of the challenges, and if you are convinced of reconsidering it, make it part of your goals. Remember lacking clear objectives and goals for attending is normal thus you shouldn’t feel bad about it. Otherwise, you can always develop goals as you attend the sessions.
2. Lower Your Expectations
Therapy is a healing process that may not happen within a single visit. Of course, it is good to be optimistic about the outcome of the sessions; however, take your time to get results. Let your expectations be moderate and realistic to avoid unforeseen disappointments.
The outcome of a therapy session depends on your ability to manage your expectations as well as the ability of your therapist to fully understand your situation and come up with the right strategies to suppress the pain. Remember, therapists are also human, so expecting them to perform magic may be overambitious. Practice patience as you trust the process.
3. Give Your First Therapy Session Adequate Time
When it is your first time seeing a therapist, schedule your visit at a suitable time to give yourself ample time necessary for the session. Typically, day one of a counseling session may take longer than expected. It is an extensive day that involves sharing what has been bothering you with your counselor. The process will uncover some truths about your situation that might need time to digest and go about.
Consider booking your first therapy session on your off days or when you’re less involved in your day-to-day activities. Post-therapy, you should be free to process everything that emerged from the session. Sometimes the outcome might be crushing; hence you need some time to be alone for meditation.
4. Create Some Time Alone Before The Session
A therapy session can be nerve-wracking, especially when you have never attended any. The anxiety and edginess that comes with it can be perplexing. Albeit, it is for your good, sparing some time alone before attending it is healthy. It prepares you emotionally ready to confess your pains and mental challenge you may be undergoing.
Booking an appointment with a therapist is already a percussion for anxiety and emotional stress, so you should try to manage them before the session. While alone, try to inhale deeply and exhale. Set a favorable ground for your therapy session.
5. Open Up And Speak With Honesty
Ideally, attending a therapy session relieves the pain and suffering you are going through. There is no better way to enhance such than by being open and honest about your story. Of course, the process can be scarier and more uncomfortable than you imagine, but it’s for your own good.
However, if you are not comfortable with a general therapist, you may need to look for a specialized therapist who may understand your issue impartially. For example, if your issues surround rejection and societal discrimination because of your sex status, you should consider a specialized therapist offering LGBTQ therapy services.
Generally, preparing to attend therapy is among the bold steps in life. The process is full of anxiety and nervousness. It would help if you prepared before taking your first or another counseling session. Set manageable goals and have realistic expectations throughout your healing time.