New Year's resolutions: The therapist's chair

For many people, setting New Year's resolutions might seem like an easy thing to do, especially when accomplished with friends, family or colleagues. But, sometimes giving up old habits can be challenging and create judgments when faced alone; working with a therapist can help.


Things to begin giving up

Here are some suggestions of what to give up in 2023 when deciding on your resolutions and goals.

Give up judging yourself for trying to please everyone

People pleasing is an act of kindness that often has no end. Working with a therapist to understand how people pleasing has become a habit or a preferred way of coping can help to reduce the pattern and understand the reason behind the coping mechanism.

Give up judging yourself for fearing change

A normal human condition is a need for consistency and familiarity. Judging yourself for not liking change can be overwhelming and feed low self-esteem, self-loathing and anxiety. Working with a therapist can help to look at what change might look like before taking action.

Give up judging yourself in grief

Living in the past or recalling things that gave you happiness and comfort is a normal way to cope with loss. However, if you feel stuck at this point, working with a therapist can help with moving forwards. Being stuck in the grief process can be debilitating, creating a sense of isolation and social anxiety. 

Being overwhelmed around others is a normal grief process and fluctuates depending on the circumstances. A therapist can help recognise the ebb and flow of grief, knowing when being around others is enough and when being around others might be beneficial for short periods.

Give up self-doubt and negative self-talk

Self-doubt can be a source of learning. Where there is doubt, there is growth. How others have spoken to you in the past can affect how you talk to yourself, encouraging or doubting. Working with a therapist can ease the way to knowing what your inbuilt self-talk is and what has been digested along the way. Going at your pace, taking one conversation at a time, can help with confidence and self-awareness that inevitably increases self-belief.

Give up judging yourself for overthinking

Most people will overthink at some point, however, trying to solve a minor problem alone is sometimes tricky under stress. Working with a therapist and observing where the overthinking takes you can be a source of healing rather than discomfort and bring understanding and awareness.

Give up judging your identity

Identity is essential to being human; understanding who you are and where you fit in makes a difference to self-esteem, belief and confidence. Being who you want to be has never been more acceptable, yet in the same breath has never been as challenging. Working with a therapist can bring clarity, confidence and self-belief.

The first step in beginning to work on your goals and resolutions is stepping through the therapist's door, sitting in a chair and starting a conversation, or clicking the Zoom link. That step can be the hardest and most rewarding of 2023.

The views expressed in this article are those of the author. All articles published on Counselling Directory are reviewed by our editorial team.

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Burnley, Lancashire, BB11
Written by Sandra Williams, T.A.Psychotherapist/ supervisor at - The Therapists Chair
Burnley, Lancashire, BB11

I am a Transactional Analysis Psychotherapist in the Burnley area. My background is in NHS health care, youth work and mental health. I work in a relational way, online and face-to-face. Psychotherapy provides an opportunity to gain clarity and understanding to know who you are.

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