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Who Needs Therapy?

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Who Needs Therapy?

"Why should I go to therapy?" is a question I get asked lots by people who have never tried it before. Reasons for going to therapy are as varied as the folks who go, and anyone can benefit from it. Caring for your mental health is no different than getting regular checkups at the dentist or hitting the gym to keep strong. Here are just a few reasons to go: 

Life transitions

Whether the transitions are good, bad, or neutral - a therapist can help process changing careers, going back to school, moving to a new city, or an upcoming adoption. Or maybe you’re feeling stuck at a fork in the road and are having to make a tough decision. Talking about it out loud with someone whose job it is to help you make sense of it all can help. 

 

Relationship woes

 

It can help to talk out the ways a relationship gets stuck (or ends), or discover where you feel blocked in communicating with your loved one(s). This isn’t limited to a significant other. Therapy is a great place to take struggles with your friends, your co-workers, and your family of origin, too. And for some people, a lack of a relationship is distressing and also an excellent reason to seek therapy. 

 

Grief

 

Grief is not linear and unfortunately there’s no magic timeline for when it ends. Sometimes, just when you think you’ve dealt with all there is to deal with around a loss, grief crops back up again. A therapist can hear that and sit with you in it

 

Burnout

 

Does your job come with mental health days? Do you find yourself needing lots of them? Maybe it’s a good idea to also talk that stress out with someone. 

 

Identity questions

 

Whether you’re asking yourself about parts of your identity you can’t change but want to connect more to (like race), or curious about exploring parts of your identity that may fluctuate (like sexual orientation or gender), big feelings around “who even am I?” may come up for you - and they’re great feelings to share in therapy. Maybe you just need someone to confide in?

 

Focus 

 

Whether you’re living with a diagnosis of ADHD or struggling to choose which pile of hard stuff to tackle first, talking out the long list of to-dos can help bring perspective. Perhaps your inability to concentrate is coming from specific influences, like difficulty at home or work. No matter the cause of focus troubles, talking about it with a therapist can help. 

 

Depression

 

It’s possible you’ve had a low mood for a while and just keep hoping it will shift on its own. If nothing makes you happy anymore - not even the things that you could always count on delighting in - a therapist might be a good next plan. 

 

“Negative” coping strategies

 

If you’re coping with hard stuff, who really gets to label the ways you cope as negative? You’re a genius and you’re doing the best you can! If you wish you weren’t looking to those same strategies any longer, or feel that they’re not serving the same purpose and are becoming an issue all of their own, maybe it’s time to talk to someone. (these strategies may include alcohol, drugs, shopping…) 

 

Anxiety

 

Being overwhelmed with anxiety is not much fun at all. Whether it shows up in the form of worries and fears, or full blown panic attacks, a therapist can help you process and cope with anxiety if it's interfering with your everyday life. 

 

Trauma

 

Whether you’ve gone through a singular traumatic event, or a series of traumas, trauma informed therapy can help you cope and not feel so alone. A therapist can help you improve your skills in surviving it. 

 

Chronic pain/health issues 

Having ongoing medical struggles brings about a lot of big feelings that are equally as important to address and manage. Particularly when you feel as though you’re fighting a battle alone, it can be really useful to have a steady person to talk to about your journey. 

 

Just because you want to

Just being human is hard work. Everyone can benefit from talking about their goals and fears - no matter how big or small they may seem. Therapy doesn't have to be about any of the struggles listed above (or many that weren't listed). Just being able to talk about who you are, where you came from, how you got to where you are today, can simply improve your esteem and support further growth. 

Of course, this list isn't complete, but if you find yourself curious about giving therapy a try for any reason - mentioned or not - perhaps it's time to make that call. If you're in the Toronto area and looking for a therapist (or in Ontario and looking for video therapy), feel free to connect with me at jenn@jennseeley.com - if I'm not who you need, I'll happily help direct you to other resources. 

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  • Jenn Seeley