For those who know the benefits of therapy, you already know, but for those who don't, hopefully this will give you a little perspective and something to consider. When I began a master's in counseling psychology program, one of the graduation requirements is that you engage in at least 24 hours of your own personal psychotherapy. I thought this was a great requirement since I'd never attended my own personal therapy and had been wanting to start for quite some time. I think I considered therapy the same way a lot of people who have never actually been to therapy think, "Therapy is for people with REAL problems" or "Therapy is too expensive". I did not know the depth of awareness I was able to achieve by dedicating a fifty (50) minute hour to self-healing.
What is actually so beautiful about therapy? I think the most beautiful gift is clarity. Clarity on anything you may be confused about in your life. Clarity on where you've been and hopefully where you are going. You truly get what you put into it and the more you bring of yourself, the more you get out of the process. Patterns repeat themselves in your life, particularly when you are not aware there is a pattern to be found. Therapy can help reveal those patterns in your life and if the pattern is harmful, you can get help from a professional in how you can change that pattern. Revealing the pattern can be therapeutic and help you move your life in the direction you want.
Do you think your problems are not big enough for therapy? If that is what you think, think again. You can go to therapy for anything you want to address in your life. Don't ever think you are not deserving of a safe space because you are discounting your pain. Everyone's journey through life is different and having a licensed professional with you shining the light ahead so you can see your way is no different than you providing that same light for someone else. Darkness is darkness and if you are feeling like you are in a dark place, the light or clarity provided by a therapist is just as important whether you are battling suicidal thoughts or having difficulty navigating the relationships in your life. Therapy is for everyone.
Another beautiful thing about therapy is the freedom to speak confidentially. Do you know how many people hold things in simply because they don't trust anyone to talk to? In your therapist, you have a confidante (providing you don't say something with the intention of harming yourself or someone else) and someone who will listen to you without judgment. How refreshing does that sound? That you can release your inner most thoughts, beliefs, and feelings and your words will never leave the comfort of the safe space you've helped to create between you and your therapist? Confidentiality is so important, especially when you are being vulnerable.
For those people who never seem to take time out to do something solely for themselves, consistently committing to therapy is a form of self-care. Although you are doing work and going through intense emotions, this is your time. I know people who think of everything they need to take care of before they take care of themselves. If you are a parent, that most likely, is compounded. This is time dedicated solely for the benefit of you so relax and take advantage of every minute. The entire time is about you. You control your session, you determine what you do or do not want to discuss. This time is truly all about you.
I can go on, but overall, therapy is for you. A safe space is essential for everyone, particularly right now. There are so many events that seem to take place on a daily basis that can take a toll on your emotions. People are angry, sad, confused, unhappy, and any other emotion you can think. In a world that seems to be falling apart at the seams, therapy is an opportunity to tighten the seams, at least until your next appointment, until one day you are able to sew and repair your own loose seams all by yourself.