You might have considered trying to seek professional help. Maybe you even had a consultation with a counsellor or psychotherapist.
But each time you think of going back, you talk yourself out of it.
Are your excuses for not reaching out for support good ones? Or are they actually quite typical? Read the most common excuses below.
1. It’s just one more thing to do I have neither the time nor energy for.
Does life always feels overwhelming? Have you convinced yourself it’s ‘normal’ to feel constantly stressed and just get through each day? Think again.
Stress and overwhelm often happen because your ways of being in the world are not as healthy as they could be. You don’t no how to say no to others, or how to do what makes you feel good in life (or even how to identify what that is). Maybe you are even living out someone else’s values other than our own.
You might even have a trauma in your past that has left you with low burning anxiety, eating your energy so there is none left to manage life well or even think clearly.
Yes, therapy is one more thing on the list. But in the long term it makes life easier because it helps sort issues like the above.
When you release old trauma you free up headspace, when you process emotions you release energy, and when you learn who you are and what you truly want you will find yourself finally making decisions that leave you confident instead of depleted.
2. I am not paying anyone to sit there judging me.
Nor should you. That is not even vaguely acceptable behaviour from a counsellor or psychotherapist.
A certified, registered therapist is trained to listen without judgement and rather with empathy.
3. I’m not crazy and I don’t need someone telling me I am.
A proper, licensed, and registered therapist is probably the last person who would call you ‘crazy’. (In fact at Harley Therapy we are strong advocates against such stigmatising language).
4. I don’t want to be labelled.
Some people find comfort in a diagnosis as they see it as a platform to make sense of what they have been going through. Other people feel like they have been put in a cage they don’t want to be in.
It’s important to remember that any psychological ‘disorder’ is not a sickness you can look at under a microscope. It is merely a label created by people working in mental health to describe a group of symptoms that often occur together. It’s a short hand that helps mental health practitioners communicate, but should not be used against you.
A good counsellor and psychotherapist will never see you as just a label, but as a unique human.
5. Therapists have their own problems, how can they make my life better?
Yes, therapists are just people. They are not perfect.
But they do have high end listening and empathy skills that take years of training and practise to attain. (Think about your friends and family, do any of them really know how to listen to you in the way you wish they would?)
And actually, it’s not a therapist’s job to make your life better for you – they are instead trying to listen to you without judgement and ask you good questions so that you are empowered to make things better for yourself.
6. I tried it once and it didn’t work out so obviously it’s not right for me.
Therapy is at heart a relationship, so can be a bit like dating. It can take a few tries to find a therapist that you have a great click with and feel you can trust. Of course it can take so much courage to book that first session it can feel exhausting to think you need to try another.
But it’s worth it. When you do find a counsellor or psychotherapist you are sympatico with, you can make real progress in your life.
7. Why bother. Nothing ever really changes anyway and I am stuck being me.
This is a perspective. The other perspective is the only thing you can count on in life is that things do change.
It is important to question why you think you have to ‘change’. Maybe you are fine just as you are, and all that needs to change is the way you communicate, or the way you make choices. Therapy can help you with all of this.
8. I just can’t afford it.
If you are willing to be on a waiting list, you can go to your GP and seek professional help for free under the NHS. Otherwise, there are several low cost ways to try therapy (read our article on free or low cost therapy).
If you want a really experienced therapist as soon as possible, it is true you generally have to go private and pay. It’s possible, though, your workplace insurances will cover some therapy sessions.
As for it not being affordable….many people spend more than the cost of a therapist per week on buying drinks at bars, dinners out, or online shopping. So are you really sure you can’t afford a therapist… or is it more correct that you are choosing not to afford one? Just a thought.
At Harley Therapy all our therapists have at least five years clinical experience and hold qualifications from the UK’s leading psychotherapy institutions. You can try an appointment at one of our three London locations, or worldwide via Skype Therapy.