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Why should I go

to therapy?

Perhaps the real question is, why DON’T I go to therapy? We go to the doctor when we’re sick, the dentist every 6 months so our teeth don’t fall out and the salon when we want to feel and look fabulous.  These are all activities which are considered rather essential to most, and nobody bats an eye about it. But why do so many individuals actively avoid addressing their mental and emotional needs? Why don’t people go to therapy?

After working and studying in the mental health field for a considerable amount of time, I can hedge a few guesses. First of all, it can be daunting to ask for help, right? To drop the endless façade that you have everything handled and admit that you are indeed a human being, with unique emotions and needs. But you see, taking that courageous first step towards mental and emotional well-being is a crucial act of love, for yourself AND those around you. Once you have taken care of yourself, you will be freed up in order to be truly present for your loved ones, colleagues, and friends. Going to therapy does NOT mean that you’re weak, on the contrary, it bears testimony to your strength.

I have also heard many people claim that they would simply prefer to talk to their loved ones instead of a total stranger. If you are lucky enough to have a supportive circle of friends and family to open up to, that is absolutely wonderful and I agree, you should utilize your support system to the fullest. But friendship is simply not psychotherapy. In a therapeutic relationship, you will be supported and challenged to take a much deeper look at your life, emotions, and motivations and thus gain valuable insight into your identity and struggles. A counsellor is a trained listener and solution-finder, and everything you divulge remains entirely confidential.

Another strategy is the use of medication, prescribed by a doctor. Absolutely, if necessary, your doctor can provide medication to address a diagnosed mental health issue.  But doctors are not trained mental health professionals and popping pills can often merely address the symptoms rather than the cause of your problems. Therapists will treat you as a whole person and navigate the nuances of your mental health in a personalized and holistic way. They will listen, provide feedback, identify healthy coping mechanisms and work empathically with you to help you rediscover the joy in life.

Lastly, time and money. Possibly the most common excuse for avoiding the counsellors’ sofa. For any real change to take place, real resources are necessary. You will be more wholly committed to the therapy process, simply because we all like to get our money’s worth out of anything we invest in. Regarding time, this is something which requires a bit of planning and rearranging, but it is so essential to make time for your mental health. In fact, making time to address your mental health needs will save you time in the long run.

Consider all the time you have spent being unhappy, argumentative, or undecided about something. In addition, online counselling via zoom or google meet is an easy way to save time (and fuel!) while remaining in the comfort of your home, office, or hotel room. Setting aside the money and time for yourself will give you more control over your life and your overall well-being. You are worth the investment.

So, why don’t you go to therapy? If you’re ready to take the first step, reach out to us on WhatsApp at +27 825287730 or email info@mindmatterscounselling.co.za