How Do I Choose the Right Therapist?
Updated: Oct 16, 2020
Choosing the right person to trust and to open up to can be vulnerable and stressful. Sorting through the different letters after someone’s name, varying credentials, and many “specializations” might give you a headache. Not to mention, finding someone who is a right fit for your schedule and daily life!
Three Tips for Finding Dr. Right:
1. Determine what you need help with and what type of therapist might be able to help you.
Do you need a psychologist, a counselor, a social worker, a hypnotherapist or a marriage and family therapist? Often times each professional overlaps in their areas of expertise and scope of practice, but that is not always the case. Do some research online, ask friends, or spend some time with Google to find out who is best at treating your specific concerns.
Next, be sure that the person has training that will help you. Many times if you are seeking someone for general guidance or support, specialized training may not be necessary. But if you suspect you are experiencing symptoms of a specific diagnosis, checking out the professional’s background and training may be a good idea.
2. Find out if the therapist is a good fit for you and your personality.
You are the consumer here. Just like shopping for a new pair of shoes, you want to make sure you pick someone you feel comfortable with! Call around. Speak to people on the phone. Ask questions and get a feel for their style.
Remember, even after meeting with someone for your initial appointment, you are not “stuck.” If you feel unsure, bring it up with your therapist and ask them to explain more about themselves, their technique, or why the session felt the way it did. If it’s still not a good fit, let them know you may like to go elsewhere.
3. Find out about the details!
Find out if the therapist is a good fit in terms of price, theoretical background, availability, and location. You don’t want to begin therapy with someone only to find out they are never available to see you or to realize driving 60 minutes for you session just isn’t practical.
Ask about these questions up front. Some therapist will see you on an “as needed” basis whereas others will give you a set time slot each week. What works for you?
Best of luck in your journey in finding someone for you and please feel free to contact me with any questions.