It’s normal to question whether or not you should go for therapy, most of us have done at some point. However, the fact that you are even asking the question in the first place suggests there may be an underlying need to go, even if it isn’t always obvious.

We sustain psychological injuries even more than we do physical. We don’t hesitate to reach for a plaster when we cut ourselves, but when we experience emotional pain, such as rejection or failure, why do we try and carry on as though nothing has happened? You wouldn’t say to someone with a leg injury, “Oh just walk it off, it’s all in your leg.”, so why is it we when we feel sad or depressed for example, we say, “Oh it’s all in my head, I just need to get over it.”.

This doesn’t mean wallowing in self-pity, it means engaging in practices that help us to build resilience and self-esteem. Counselling and therapy can help us to overcome our troubles by building a relationship with the therapist in which we feel safe enough to process difficult feelings in a way we may never have been able to before.

Talking therapies can be extremely effective for specific problems such as depression and anxiety, among many others. It offers a place, time, and relationship in which you can speak openly in a confidential and non-judgemental environment. Sometimes we may not realise it but it can be hard to truly do that with friends and family. It also offers a space to be curious about ourselves and why we do the things we do. And, it can provide us with emotional tools that perhaps we never developed when we were growing up, or we might not feel able to access right now. We can develop specific coping strategies as a result of our childhood which may not be working so well for us as adults, therapy can help to unearth those as well as provide us with practical strategies for coping on a day to day basis.

However, going for therapy may not always be about specific mental health problems, it can simply be about engaging in a reflective practice which helps us to see the way we are living our lives more clearly and thus help us to improve our overall emotional well-being. We can stumble through life making choices and decisions seemingly for one reason, but there may be underlying reasons which we are not aware of. It can be helpful to look at those with a trained professional, who can help bring unconscious processes to light in the hope that we will then make more informed decisions.

So, being unsure as to whether we should start therapy is understandable. Talking to a stranger about things we feel we may not want to share can be incredibly hard, not to mention the financial commitment can be hard too. Yet, it seems important to remember that change is key in all of this. And as many before have said, we need change in order to grow, although this may be the very thing we fear in the first place.