You are not alone… Most people struggling with depression, anxiety, stress and other common issues find it difficult to take the first step and seek professional help.
If you are reading this article though, chances are you already started your journey. Looking for information about symptoms you are experiencing or to try and answer questions you have is always a good start.
In our experience at dealing with clients for many years, we identified a series of factors, thoughts and beliefs most people experience before they make the decision to seek professional counselling. You may identify with some or most of these.
1) Not Aware of Symptoms
You may not be able to recognise the signs and symptoms of common and treatable issues like anxiety, depression, among others. Symptoms can be mistaken by other common life issues e.g. relationship issues as “going through a bad patch” or social anxiety as being shy.
Becoming aware of the signs and symptoms that negatively impact on your life and relationships is the first step on your journey to recovery.
2) Lack of Information
You may be aware of signs and symptoms but perhaps don’t know they are treatable and changeable, leading you to think that your problem has no solution or that it will eventually go away on its own.
Knowing that there are proven techniques and evidence-based methods available to overcome those issues will help you evaluate your options and make a more informed decision about your next steps.
3) Social Stigma
Stigma still is an issue for many people and the potential benefits that counselling and personal coaching have to offer could be outweighed by how you might perceive seeking professional help.
A psychologist can help you build the necessary skills to handle and overcome stigma.
There is of course the fear to the ‘unknown’… We appreciate how you may feel about opening up to somebody you don’t know; not knowing what to expect from your first session with your psychologist and what treatment may involve… All of these fears are perfectly normal, specially if you have never worked with a psychologist in the past. Fear to experience emotional pain during your session is another common reason that prevents people from seeking help.
Discussing your feelings, thoughts and experiences with your psychologist in a safe and confidential environment can be a healing experience and will be treated with respect. You will learn how to handle painful feelings and will always control what, how much, and when to share personal information.
5) Financial Investment
Many people avoid or postpone seeking professional help purely based on the financial cost rather than a full understanding of the value and benefits they will receive.
Counselling and coaching can be an enriching experience where you discover and develop powerful personal skills you can use for life.
Working with a psychologist is not just about overcoming a particular issue. It will help you discover and develop personal skills for a healthier and more empowered life. Take the first step and get started today!