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Should I See A Therapist?

“Should I see a therapist?”

There is nothing wrong with asking yourself this question.

You are a strong individual. You have been through some tough situations in life and have been able to cope. You are the one people call when they need help, not the other way around. Up until now, you have not even thought about meeting with a therapist.

You are not alone.

In this article, you will discover eight alternative questions to ask instead of “Should I see a therapist.” By asking these other questions, you will find specific answers that may lead you in the right direction.

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Should I See A Therapist?

There are many people just like you, wondering if they should seek help from a mental health professional. Fortunately, many of these are taking that extra step and reaching out for help.

According to the American Psychological Association, who conducted a survey with 1000 random people, found that 48 percent reported someone in their household has seen a therapist within the year. More interesting is that nine out of ten of those surveyed said they will seek mental health therapy if needed.

Among the 44 million people with a mental health disorder, seeing a therapist is a key step in learning to cope with their problem. This is because there are many advantages to mental health therapy.

So how do you know when it is time to see a therapist?

Instead of asking yourself “should I see a therapist,” consider asking the following questions instead. These questions will provide a more specific answer, which may guide you toward a path of clarity and confidence.

1. Are Your Coping Tools Working?

Coping skills are learned over time. We go through difficulties and use different techniques to help us deal with the negative symptoms associated with that trial.

Coping skills can include talking with a friend or family member, journaling, exercise or spiritual exercises. There are other coping techniques that while they may work for a while, are still negative and over time can create more problems for you.

Alcohol and substance use are perfect examples of using negative coping tools.

If you have tried everything you know to help you deal with issues and are still feeling overwhelmed or like you are not winning the battle, it is time to see a therapist.

Are Your Friends and Family Members Worried About You?

You may think it is easy to keep all your emotions and problems hidden from the world. You make excuses or downplay how you truly feel when friends or family question you. You may even put on a good front while in public but in private, you break down.

You can only hold up this front for so long before others will begin to see you are struggling. Those that truly care about you will ask questions. They want to see you happy and healthy. They want the best for you, which may include seeing a therapist.

Are you feeling bad physically?

Do you have unexplained headaches? Do you notice your joints are achy and you feel stiff more than usual? Do you desire more sleep time than participating in other activities? These are just a few physical signs you may be dealing with a mental health issue.

It is true, our bodies are affected by our mental health. You may think going to your family physician is the answer. After a while, and several tests, they may tell you that you are fine. They say your blood work is normal. They say your x-rays and all other tests have come back normal, yet you know you are not fine, and you do not feel normal.

This is when you may want to investigate how your mental health is affecting your physical health. You can do this by meeting with a therapist.

Do Your Emotions Feel Out of Control?

Everyone has moments when emotions overwhelm us, and we ca not control them. For instance, a loved one dies unexpectedly, and you burst into tears at work when you get the news. Or, you had a fight with your spouse before work and you let your anger affect how you treat others throughout the workday.

However, if you notice you are crying daily, at work or at home or both, you are likely dealing with something more serious. If you are easily agitated and snap at coworkers, friends or family over any little irritation, it may be time to seek the help of a therapist.

Do You Feel Excited About Your Future?

Hope of what the future can bring is a small part of what keeps us excited and eager to keep going. It makes the stress from work and our personal life seem less overwhelming. It helps us take risks and make changes we feel can improve our lives.

Do you feel hope and excitement for your future? Do you feel life is worth living? Do you know there will be good times ahead with family and friends?

If your answer is “no” to any of these, therapy is a good idea. You deserve a happy life now and in the future. Great things can lie ahead for you and a therapist can help you identify and embrace them.

Do You Beat Yourself Up?

Are you your own worst critic? Do you find yourself making negative statements about yourself or to yourself? For instance, do you call yourself “fat”, “ugly”, or a “loser”?  Do you curse yourself when you make a mistake?

If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, you need a self-esteem boost. Therapists have many activities to help you improve the way you feel, think and act towards yourself. They can help you see the great qualities you possess.

Are You Human?

Every single person has difficulties at some point in their life, whether mentally or physically. If you break your foot, you would not hesitate to see an orthopedic. If you have a cavity, you make an appointment with a dentist. If you have the flu, you meet with your physician for treatment.

Your mental health is no different than other ailments and should be treated the same.

If you are feeling depressed, anxious or just not like your usual self, a therapist can help. Rather than beating yourself up, isolating yourself, or using negative coping skills, seek help from a trained professional equipped with skills to begin to empower you, leading you to feel better.

You deserve to feel better and you are worth it.

Conclusion

While there is nothing wrong with asking yourself “should I see a therapist,” you may find it more beneficial to ask these eight other questions instead.

By asking these other questions, you may find a the clarity you need to move forward on the healthiest path for your life with confidence.


Chris Massman is a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in Agoura Hills, CA. She graduated Phillips Graduate Institute with a Master of Arts in Psychology in 2014 and received her Chemical Dependency Specialty in 2014. Today, she practices Congnitive-behavioral therapy to help individuals, couples, and families identify and overcome a variety of unique challenges.