Choosing to go to therapy is a big step. For many people on the path to healing, finding
a good therapist may seem like a daunting task. Since you are likely to be discussing
uncomfortable and personal issues in therapy, it is important that you feel safe, comfortable,
and connected with your therapist. Research has shown that bad therapy can actually do more
harm than good, and can be potentially destructive to your healing process. This is why it’s
crucial to do your research and ask questions when searching for a new therapist.
Consider What You’re Looking For:
Your relationship with your therapist is the most important factor to a positive therapy
experience. Since you will be discussing intimate, private, and sometimes negative parts about
yourself, it is important that your therapist is someone who you like and feel safe opening up
to. If you dislike your therapist or don’t feel comfortable with them, you might find yourself
lying to them or keeping things from them, which ultimately hinders your healing process.
Consider different factors such as age, gender, culture, and religion. Would you feel
more comfortable with a therapist the same gender as you? Would you prefer an older
therapist who has more experience? Do you need someone who understands or shares your
religious beliefs? Would you prefer a therapist with your same cultural background? These are
all important questions to consider when deciding what you are looking for.
Consult your Network:
In 2021, the CDC reported that about 21.6% of adults in the US are receiving mental
health treatment. Therefore, it is likely that you know someone who currently goes to therapy
or has at some point in their life. Asking your friends and family who have had positive therapy
experiences for a referral is a great way to get your foot in the door. You could also ask your
primary care provider or other doctors you see to refer you to someone in their network.
It is important to note that just because your loved one recommends a specific therapist
doesn’t mean they are right for you. Everyone has different goals and needs which can’t always
be facilitated by the same therapist. Therefore, it is important that your therapist is someone
you feel connected to.
Explore Local and Online Resources
Many mental health organizations and associations have a network of providers that
they recommend. Do some research on local associations or find one online that aligns with
your values and what you are looking for such as Psychology Today. If you have a specific mental health condition, these organizations may be able to provide you with a comprehensive list of therapists that specialize in that condition. (This article was contributed by UCF Clinical Psychology student, Mileydy Morales)
At Constantly Healthy Counseling & Coaching, we can help you connect and find the right fit for you in therapy in Orlando, Florida. Call us at (407) 714-6362 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org