Whole Heart Therapy

Pamela Boysen, LCSW             714 844-7282

December 10, 2020

Can a Therapist help? 4 Steps to finding someone who can 

Many people who have not ever felt a need for mental health services are now contemplating looking for a therapist during these challenging times. 

They are feeling unsure of how to deal with the increased anxiety, uncertainty, and isolation this pandemic has brought upon us.

You may be saying, “I have never needed therapy, there is nothing wrong with me.” And this winter you are experiencing more anxiety, have trouble sleeping, less joy, and sometimes just feel scared.

First, I want to say to you, there is nothing wrong with you. You have skills to handle stress. You have been able to cope in the past AND the stress of the pandemic with additional stressors of children at home, doing school on-line, others in the household trying to work remotely, and/or financials stressors has stretched your skills to the limit.

It may be time to seek out a therapist who can provide a listening ear without judgment, validate your feelings, and offer ways to help reduce your anxiety.

So, how do you find a therapist?

First and foremost, research has shown that the most important indicator of success in therapy is the relationship between you and your therapist.

By following these 4 steps you will find someone who is right for you. 

  1. Go to therapist directories such as Psychology Today, Therapy Tribe, or Good Therapy. Put in the criteria that is important to you such as location and specialities. 
  2. Look at the therapist’s website, especially their specialties, experience, and style of therapy. Do they know how to work with your specific needs and issues? Right now, finding ways to reduce anxiety may be your biggest need.
  3. When reviewing their website, their blog posts, or a short video where they introduce themselves, notice how your body responds. Is their website clear, informative, and answers your questions? From their video, is their voice calming? Do you like their energy level? Do they have the skills you are looking for? Perhaps, you want mindfulness practices, or a more cognitive approach called CBT (Cognitive Behavioral Therapy).
  4. Ask for a free phone or video consultation. Most therapists offer this so you can get a feel for their approach and fit. Ask questions! You are in charge of deciding if they are a good fit, if they are not, say thank you and keep looking.

Trust your gut instinct, meaning, if you get a good feeling about a therapist, follow that hunch. Once you have found a therapist, here are some ways they can assist you. 

During a therapy session:

  • You have a safe place to share your fears, frustrations, and sadness without burdening your family and friends
  • They are someone who listens to you without judgment
  • With them you remember what does give you joy
  • You receive new skills to reduce anxiety such as how get grounded or have gratitude for what is present in your life right now.

I wish you the best during these times. You are worth investing in your mental health so you can be happier and be more present for your loved ones, both family and friends.

Pamela Boysen is a Clinical Social Worker licensed in California, Arkansas, Kansas, and Missouri. She has a private practice, Whole Heart Therapy in Seal Beach, CA and offers online therapy for clients residing in the states she is licensed. She specializes in attachment and trauma in all life stages with an emphasis on somatic techniques to integrate the body, mind, and emotional aspects of self to heal and feel better. She can be reached at [email protected] or 714 844-7282.