Getting the Most out of Therapy

Theresa Nguyen, LCSW, Mental Health America
Therapy

Therapy likely will work best if there is a partnership between you and the therapist. Take an active part in your sessions and think ahead about what you want to change in your life.

You can strengthen your therapy in many ways.

  • Tell your provider your goals for treatment. Think about whether there are certain behaviors or issues you care about most and how you want treatment to help you with those goals.

  • Keep an open mind. Be willing to consider new ways of behaving and thinking that might improve the quality of your life. We all resist change, so don't be surprised if you are tempted to quit right before some real changes happen.

  • If you think you're not making progress, you should tell your provider. A good therapist will want to work with you so you can get the most out of your sessions. After discussing your concerns, if you're still not comfortable, you might consider meeting with another therapist for advice and possibly switching.

  • Be open and honest. Your therapist can't really help you if you don't share the whole picture. Don't say you're fine if you're not.

  • Take your therapy home. Getting better takes time and practice. Think about ways to use ideas from therapy in your daily life. You might consider finding a way to keep track of what you've been discussing in therapy and whether you’ve seen progress.  Remember progress doesn’t happen overnight, but you should see change over the course of weeks or months.

Treatment & Resources