What is Counseling Going to Do for Me?

There are many benefits to counseling and each client usually has their own agenda of what they want from counseling. Clients typically find that counselors can be a tremendous asset to increasing personal growth, improving interpersonal relationships, family concerns, relationship troubles, and the daily hassles of life.

Clients usually seek counseling for encouragement, problem-solving skills, support, and healthy coping strategies while struggling with things like anxiety, depression, grief, relationship troubles, addiction, unresolved childhood issues, and stress management. 

Clients often get a fresh perspective on difficult problems they’ve tried to solve on their own.

Some of the benefits available from counseling include:

  • Learning new ways to cope with stress and anxiety
  • ​Better understanding yourself and your goals and values
  • Improving your self-esteem 
  • ​Boosting self-confidence
  • ​Discovering new ways to solve problems
  • Developing skills for improving communication and listening
  • ​Transforming anger, grief, depression, and other emotional pressures
  • Dissolving old behavior patterns and developing new ones
I’ve never talked to anyone. I’m used to handling things on my own. Aren’t people who go to therapy weak?
Not at all! People who ask for help know when they need it and have the ability to reach out. Everyone needs help now and then. You already have some strengths that you’ve used before, that for whatever reason isn’t working right now. Perhaps this problem feels overwhelming and is making it difficult to access your past strengths. In our work together, I’ll help you identify what those strengths are and how to implement them again in what is happening now.
Can’t I just talk to my best friend or family?
The difference is between someone who can do something, and someone who has the training and experience to do that same thing professionally. A mental health professional can help you approach your situation in a new way– teach you new skills, gain different perspectives, listen to you without judgment or expectations, and help you listen to yourself. Furthermore, therapy is completely confidential. You won’t have to worry about others “knowing my business.” Lastly, if your situation provokes a great deal of negative emotion, if you’ve been confiding in a friend or family member, there is the risk that once you are feeling better you could start avoiding that person so you aren’t reminded of this difficult time in your life.
Why shouldn’t I just take medication?

Medication alone cannot solve all issues because it only treats symptoms. Our work together is designed to explore the root of the issue, dig deep into your behavior and teach strategies that can help you accomplish your personal and/or relational goals. The benefit you get from therapy can be similar to medication, depending on how well you use the process and put into practice what you learn.

Depending on your symptoms, medication can be effective and is sometimes needed in conjunction with therapy.

How long will counseling take?
Unfortunately, this is not possible to say in a general FAQ page. Everyone’s circumstances are unique to them and the length of time therapy can take to allow you to accomplish your goals depends on your desire for personal development, your commitment, and the factors that are driving you to seek therapy in the first place. Sabrina uses techniques that are meant to bring relief quickly.
My partner and I are having problems. Should we be in individual counseling or come together?

If you are concerned about your relationship, and you would both like to work with Sabrina, she would initially work with both of you together. After this work, if one of you would like to continue in individual sessions, she could work with only one of you. It is not helpful to move from individual into couple’s work with the same therapist because of potential trust issues.

Individual sessions are often done as part of couples counseling to address the issues discovered in couples sessions when needed. These are different than receiving psychotherapy with a therapist for individual mental health treatment.

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Sabrina Williams, LMFT (FL #MT4452)