When the Going gets Tough

So you’re sitting with your therapist, and you have nothing to say. 

The silence just grows and you really just want to get up and walk out.

You could ask your therapist to say something………….s/he may not tho’ – or simply reply “I’m not sure what to say”.  

So that’s both of you then. 

If only you could just find a “way in” and talk about all the things buzzing round your head. 

So you have to start somewhere……………..

“I didn’t want to come today”
“I’ve got butterflies in my stomach”
“I can’t really concentrate ‘cos there’s so many things I have to do after this session”
“I’m not sure this is working”
“I don’t think I want to come back anymore” 
“I had an argument with my partner last night” 

What is easiest for you to speak out in this situation?   Sometimes, it’s something ordinary, sometimes actually it’s the sentence that you think will hit the therapist between the eyes… 

Sometimes, you just really want to shout at him/her “I hate it when you just sit there in silence!” 

So what holds you back? Is it that you think you will be judged for what you say by the therapist?  Do you feel others judge you?  Remember this is a different person you are sitting with right now……………. 

Is it because you don’t think your therapist will be interested?  Remember that s/he is there to listen to you and has agreed to work with you, and wants to see you………….. 

Is it because face to face words are difficult?  Do you find it hard to make eye contact? What would happen if instead of staring at the floor, you looked at your therapist?  Perhaps they would be staring at the floor…………..or even worse they might be looking at you…. 

Therapy can be scary.  Relationships can be scary.  And therapeutic relationships can be even scarier – after all, you tell your therapist all about you, and get to know very little about him/her. 

What brought you here?  Is this therapy for you, or did someone else push you into it?  What do you really want?  What do you really, really want? 

Think about the following three questions: 

What do you really want in your life?
What do you want in your life in the next 6 months – 1 year?
What do you need right now? 

You might get three different answers.  You might find that your answers to the first and second questions are the same. You might find that your answer to the third question has an obvious link to the other two, or it might seem completely different. 

So - What do you need right now?  Trust your instinct – your gut feelings.  What you need right now is going to lead you to achieving what you want to achieve in your life. 

Speak out that need for yourself in your mind.
Dare to speak it out when you are on your own standing in front of the mirror.
Speak it out to your therapist……………….. 

I know it’s a big jump – it’s like trusting that if you jump across the chasm, you will land safely on the other side.

It could be the biggest jump of your life. 
And it could be start of a whole new relationship.
And it could the first step on the journey of the rest of your life…………………

Counselling Directory is not responsible for the articles published by members. The views expressed are those of the member who wrote the article.

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