October 12, 2017

Nervous About Counseling? Here’s What to Expect.

Posted in News tagged , , at 12:51 pm by kellyfdennis

CreampuffI met an individual at the local café the other day and we started chatting. She stated that she thought she would benefit from counseling, but was hesitant to make an appointment because she had no idea what to expect. This was causing her undue anxiety. I explained to her what would happen; she felt much better and set up an appointment. As a result, I thought it might be helpful to outline what you can expect at your first appointment.

Once you decide to make an appointment and give me a call, I’ll take some info over the phone, and ask you for a brief summary of why you’re seeking counseling. After that, we’ll move to setting up your first appointment, called an intake evaluation. I’ll direct you to my website (www.kellyfdennis.com) to print out some new client paperwork for you to fill out before you get to my office.

When you get to your appointment, I’ll review the paperwork you completed. Then we’ll process your payment and I’ll begin to ask you some questions to give more details about the reasons you’re seeking counseling. I’ll ask you some questions about your family history, schooling, social relationships; as well as questions about things in your life currently, such as job and/or school, current relationships. Then we’ll talk about the current symptoms you are experiencing that are, or may be, a part of the reason you’re seeking counseling and what coping skills you might already be using.

I think therapy works better when you take an active role (rather than just responding to only my questions). Therapy is really a team effort; I am trained to ask the right questions, but I’m not a mind reader, so feel free to add information that you believe might be pertinent. It can be helpful to write down some things that are bothering you ahead of time when you’re not feeling nervous, which, by the way, is completely normal.

In addition, try to be open and honest with your emotions.  Many clients have apologized for becoming tearful or expressing their feelings vociferously in their first session. This is not bothersome for me and actually helps me to understand your situation better.

Finally, try to come to therapy with realistic expectations. It is not a quick fix. Working through problems takes time, effort, and commitment to the therapy process. With effort on your part and a strong therapeutic relationship, it can be a successful tool toward resolving problems.

Be Well and Have a Wonderful Day!

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stefdennis

ponderings on life, food, God, and love

Grace on the Moon

Do Not Weigh Your Self-Esteem on a Scale

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