by Andrea M. Darcy
Have you been wondering if you should give therapy a try?
Or did someone tell you you could benefit, and you wonder if they are right?
10 questions to ask if you are not sure you need therapy
Try asking yourself the following questions that cover the most popular reasons people come to therapy.
1. Have I struggled to be myself lately?
The main misunderstanding about therapy is that we have to be having a breakdown to seek professional support. Not at all.
Therapy is best sought when we realise we are struggling. It gives us the tools to manage so that we never reach that place of breakdown or life sabotage.
If life has left you off-kilter or moodier than usual, and it’s been going on for a few months or more, it is more than enough to merit a chat with a counsellor or psychotherapist.
2. Has day-to-day life just felt harder?
Some of us are not so good at knowing what we think or feel. So you might think you are ‘fine’, but just notice that life feels challenging on all fronts.
This can look like finding it hard to get up and go to work, feeling fatigued all the time, leaving social events feeling drained instead of good, and suddenly having no desire to contact your family.
If an appointment with your GP doesn’t show up any sort of physical reason for your apathy and exhaustion, it might be time to talk to a therapist. All of the above can be signs of mild depression.
3. Do I have a confidante that I can trust to be impartial?
Sometimes a counsellor or psychotherapist is needed because we simply don’t have the support we need at a certain juncture in our life.
The logistics of life can leave us suddenly all alone. Perhaps your loved ones have passed away, or are suddenly in a different country. Or perhaps you have left a relationship or job and by so doing lost your social circle.
Other times we simply realise that nobody around us is able to offer us the feedback we need without colouring their responses with their own hopes and desires. We can’t pinpoint what we ourselves actually need because we are too intertwined with the needs of others.
A counsellor or psychotherapist provides a safe, confidential and unbiased space for you to share and discuss anything that is troubling you.
4. Is there a big choice I need to make I’ve been struggling with?
If you can’t seem to gain clarity on something important like a wedding or career change, it’s more than enough of a reason to see a therapist. Counsellors and psychotherapists are trained at listening carefully, then asking just the right questions to help you see a new way forward.
5. Is my worry increasing, and are my thoughts less logical?
Worrying more than ever, especially if your thoughts are becoming dramatic and illogical, can be a sign you are developing anxiety.
While anxiety is treatable, if it’s left untreated too long it can turn into an anxiety disorder that can be harder to overcome.
6. Have I lost interest lately in things I used to love?
Yes, sometimes we just grow up and realise that our old hobbies don’t really suit who we are anymore.
But if you can’t explain why you are no longer interested in the sports you used to love, or in seeing the friends you were always happy to be around, and if you’ve also experienced stress or a life change lately, it could be worth talking to a therapist. Losing interest in life is a common sign of depression.
7. Have friends been avoiding me, or saying they are worried about me?
If your good friends are suggesting they are worried about you, and/or your less close friends suddenly avoiding you, it’s worth being brave and booking a session with a therapist. And if it really is in the end just your friends being bossy with you, a therapist is able to help you work on attracting better relationships into your life!
8. Am I just not bouncing back from something?
A bereavement, a breakup, a divorce, a betrayal, moving country, finding yourself with an ‘empty nest’, a redundancy… such things can leave us on the ground for awhile.
But if it’s been a few months and you can’t seem to recuperate from a shock it is suggested to seek support. Sometimes a life change can trigger old repressed memories or hidden emotions that need dealing with.
9. Do I have a habit that I keep secret from others that causes me ongoing shame and/or life problems?
Just because something is hidden doesn’t mean it’s not a major problem.
And it doesn’t matter if it’s something that is socially acceptable or not. Things like overeating, overspending, or overworking are all forms of addiction that can undermine both our confidence, our relationships, and our success. Seek help.
10. Do I spend most of my life feeling worthless compared to others?
Low self-esteem is one of the leading causes of depression. And always comparing yourself (unfavourably) just makes life harder. It might be your career that suffers, or your social life, or your love life. Therapy helps you see yourself from new and more encouraging perspectives.
I am still not sure if I need a therapist…
These questions cover the most common reasons that people come to therapy, such as depression, anxiety, low self-esteem, difficult life changes, and addictions. But there are many other reasons to seek support. Join our blog now to receive the next post in this series, “Surprising questions that show you could benefit from therapy”.
Are you thinking you’d like to try a therapist? Harley Therapy puts you in contact with highly trained and professional therapists in the UK. Always travelling? Try an online therapist, as flexible as you are.
Still have questions or want to share an experience about learning if you need therapy? Use the public comment box below.