Why am I so reluctant about seeing someone?

Maybe you have never seen a therapist or life coach before. You’re not sure if it will help. You don’t know what to do or expect and this is a time when you’re not sure about anything. Seeing a therapist or looking into therapy services in Chicago is something different and you’re not sure where to start or how to find someone who will understand. Besides you feel that you should be able to solve your own problems.

All of these feelings are quite normal and it is understandable why you are feeling this way. The fact is that there are millions of other people like you who are experiencing or who have experienced problems related to their emotional well~being. To put it simply, you are not alone. Unfortunately sometimes we may feel weak when we ask for help. The truth is that asking for help is an actual strength. It takes a lot of courage to admit that we do not know. that we are scared and lost. We have been trained to believe that we have to know and that it is wrong to be afraid. We are supposed to be strong, in control, and invincible. The other truth is that nobody can be perfect and that everybody needs help at some time. Sometimes a professionally trained guide can be someone who can help you through the bumps in life.

How do I know if I need help?

Ask your self if you have been dissatisfied with the way you have been feeling? Are your feelings or emotions interfering with: work or school?, friendships or family relationships?, sleep?, eating?, sexuality?, general health?, self-esteem?, Have there been big changes recently that you are having trouble getting use to such as health? job status or responsibilities? living arrangements? relationships? or a financial situation?

Is there a feeling or behavior that is getting worse? Do you think you have a difficult problem which is troubling you? do you just want someone to understand you or to listen to you? And is it something that you feel would be difficult to talk to someone close to you? Trust you gut. Therapy could really help and you won’t know unless you try it.

Can’t I just talk to a friend?

You could and it might help. But sometimes they may not be able to understand or be able to help you with your emotional problems. It may also be difficult for a friend to be completely objective because of the relationship with you. Other sources of help include the human resource office or employee assistance program at work. These people can offer some short-term help.

Does therapy and or life coaching work?

Yes, it can. We do know that it is difficult to scientifically measure how humans change, especially when we are all individually unique and that change is different for everyone. And, of course, we, humans, can be an unpredictable lot. But, still, the general consensus is that it does work. Consumer Reports in November, 1995 conducted the largest survey ever to query people on mental health care. The survey provides convincing evidence that therapy can make an important difference.

4000 readers were highly satisfied with the care that they received. Most had made strides toward resolving the problems that led to treatment, and almost all said life had become manageable. The survey showed that overall, psychotherapy works. It is safe to conclude that it is clearly superior to no treatment at all.

There is also very recent research out by Susan Vaughan, M. D. (1997) that shows what could be considered as scientific evidence, on how psychotherapy works. The process of therapy (or the repeated concentrated attention to core conflicts) actually alters the shape of our neurons, modifies the connection between nerve cells in the brain, and effects permanent changes in how we interact with the world. Just as repeated exercise can change the shape of our bodies, so can repeated attention to our conflicts, in the course of our work with a therapist, alter the shape of our minds!

How does therapy or life coaching work?

There are many theories, and everyone doesn’t agree. We are still exactly unsure as to how it really works. Some people look at therapy as a chance to experience major issues in their life, in a non-threatening relationship, with someone who has had special training to help and who is dedicated to that alone. It is a chance to have a nurturing, healthy, objective relationship. A place where you can say things that you might not be able to say anywhere else. It is a relationship with another human being that is different from any other relationship you have had. It is a place to heal, to understand, to gain insight, helping you to observe your life, to make choices, and to change.

The majority of people feel that it is the relationship of the client with the therapist or coach that matters most. Of course, the most important variable, byfar is that you trust your therapist. There may be times in the therapeutic process in which you are angry or upset with your therapist (this is normal) but at all times trust must be present. The next important variable would be competence. Training and experience are significant variables in this field. Therapists are humans. Humans make mistakes; therefore, therapists can be wrong. Paradoxically, it is easier to trust someone who admits they are wrong than to trust someone who believes they are always right. Therapy is first and foremost a process. In many ways, it parallels life. The simplest way to think of it is that two people, the therapist and the client, are focusing together on one person’s life. this kind of attention and concentration as mentioned before, can be powerful. Good therapy needs to be more than attention. There is a strong teaching component to all therapies. Some teaching styles are more directive, others are more covert and indirect. Teaching, retraining, rethinking, and restructuring need to be included in the change process.

Personally, I think of psychotherapy more as an art than science, so I am inclined to evaluate therapy as I would evaluate other artwork: subjectively, intuitively, aesthetically-with imagination and leaps of faith. Much of the time the process of therapy seems mysterious and almost magical. To heal is an emotional experience, beyond just understanding our problems. This makes the personality and availability of the therapist more significant than any technique he or she might use.

What about couple or marital therapy?

An objective, neutral third party can be helpful. A professional who can point out the way two people are interacting, right there in the room, can be useful in and of itself. Creating a safe environment so that two people can share their vulnerabilities can lead to a greater understanding of each other and ultimately to greater intimacy. Getting two people to really listen to each other can lead to healing. Receiving positive reinforcement for what the couple is doing well can be helpful.

One of the most nurturing things that couples can do is to get a mental health checkup periodically. Your therapist or life coach is not threatening. It is perfectly okay to ask for help when you have a question. Therapy is often more successful as a preventive measure or early intervention. Do you until you have pneumonia before you go to your doctor? Waiting until you have a crisis in your relationship is not nurturing and it perpetuates ruts. Working on your problems as they come up is comforting and rut defying. Often, because of the nature of intimate relationships, an issue that might have been driving you both crazy for years can be worked out in just a few visits to an objective, trained couples therapist. You go for a physical every two years, go for a mental health check-up every three years. Yes, therapist can be expensive but so is dinner out, and think how much better you might feel afterward.

We are ready to split up …is it worth it?

Maybe. Apart from physical or emotional abuse, therapy can be a way to sort things out. Even if therapy doesn’t bring about a reconciliation, it will at least give both partners some badly needed perspectives on the prospect of splitting up.

Could we be avoiding our problems or ignoring them?

Possibly. And this is where professional help can come in.

How long does it take?

It is hard to say. Therapy may require only a few sessions or many.

How much does it cost?

Cost varies. It depends on what the therapist is charging. If you cannot afford the full fee ask your therapist whether he or she will work at a reduced rate.

Will my insurance cover any of the cost?

That is up to your carrier. You need to ask them. Do not assume that they do. Every insurance company has their own stipulations. Remember that you are usually limited to a number of sessions so you might want to consider paying out of your own pocket. Many people do because they feel it is worth it.

How do I choose a therapist or coach in Chicago?

You could consider qualifications such as the therapist’s training and/or experience. But that will not necessarily guarantee a good “fit”. You should be looking for compatibility. You want a therapist who is courteous and empathetic and has a genuine. active concern for your welfare.

A therapist should be supportive without being intrusive. You can ask the therapist if he or she does initial consultations and if or if he or she charges for one.

Author's Bio: 

Dan Becco M.S., M.F.T., Therapist and Life Coach for 15 years, specializing in Individuals & Couples Therapy, Relationship Skills and Career Development “Working with Dan has been invaluable for me. His experience and range of approaches sometimes lead to challenging work, but work worth doing. I wholeheartedly recommend him.” Nathan K.
“Dan was my counselor for a year including sessions by myself and as a couple with my husband. We both found the experience to be enlightening, and years later we still draw on what we learned. The work isn’t always easy but talking to Dan is, I highly recommend him.” Grace R. “Dan is the very best at what he does. I have consulted with Dan many times over the course of the last several years and every time he provides phenomenal results and great advice for people in the pursuit of changing their lives and/or career direction. I would definitely recommend Dan, as he has a truly unique skill set and is very knowledgeable in a variety of areas.” Arthur R. What makes me different is that when a client works with me, you should get actual results-lasting relief and demonstrative change for the better. Combined with experience as an avid yoga practitioner, I utilize yoga as a helpful resource. See Timeout Chicago’s review of Rapid Evolution Yoga: http://timeoutchicago.com/shopping-style/sports-fitness/14987035/rapid-e... Years ago, I was lost, after a painful divorce. Since then I have found abundance personally in a fulfilling relationship and in professional prosperity. I can share that with others.