10 questions to ask yourself before your first counselling session
Counselling is an investment. You invest your time, energy and your money because you want things to be different. Like any investment, it's useful to be prepared and to know what is important to you about counselling. This will help you to find the right person to work with and keep you focused on the things you most want to address.
To get the process started before you meet with your counsellor, it might be worth asking yourself the following ten questions to get you thinking, so that you can make good use of that first meeting to explore what matters:
1. What brings you to therapy?
2. Why now?
3. What are your goals for therapy?
4. What will be difference once your goals have been met?
5. How important is this to you? What benefits will it bring?
6. How will you know when your goals are met?
7. What's your understanding of the issues?
8. How do you think change might occur?
9. What are you prepared to commit to do differently to meet your goals?
10. What are you prepared to let go of to move forwards?
It's not about perfection or getting it right. It is about starting a thought process, about becoming aware of emotions and about taking ownership for this next step in your personal journey. If you're considering counselling, why not take some time to reflect on these questions before your first session?
Having a clear idea about what you want to achieve in counselling means you can review your progress regularly and make sure you are spending time talking about what matters. Bear in mind that there may be many things related to moving forwards and it's not always obvious what is and what is not connected. Counselling is a place where you can explore this and find the connections that liberate you from your troubles.
About the author
Fe Robinson is a psychotherapist and clinical supervisor working in Durham on Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Fridays. Her mission is to help clients thrive, whatever their life circumstances. Fe is UKCP accredited and BACP registered, offers EMDR therapy and couples counselling and holds a diploma in supervision.
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