Posted on May 07, 2019
It can be really tricky to know how to find a good therapist. If you’ve ever thought, “do I need therapy?” it may be time to start looking at your options. Many people have a strong sense that they want to start seeing someone, but have no idea where to look. Mental health professionals all have specialties in their area of expertise - it is important to find the right match for you.
There’re many factors beyond qualifications to consider when looking for a mental healthcare professional. Do you feel you can trust them? Do they fit your budget and specific needs? And of course, are they qualified and experienced in treating clients with similar needs to yours? These are all valid questions to ask.
The following are some tips to help you along to find the right therapist. This process should be taken seriously since your mental health is important and affects all areas of your well-being. While there’re many benefits of therapy, the only way to get the most out of your sessions is if you’re being counseled for the right type of therapy.
There are a variety of types of mental health professionals with different qualifications and areas of expertise. Figuring out what of mental health support you’re looking for help with is a crucial first step in the search for a good therapist.
Within the mental health industry, there are many specialties, such as anxiety, eating disorders, and more. You might just be looking to talk to someone about issues you are having at work or in your marriage, or your struggles with a serious disorder, such as bipolar, borderline personality, anxiety, or major depression. The objective of treatment is to rebalance your emotional well-being and get you back to a healthier state of mind. If you struggle from a mental illness, you’re going to need a good counselor that specializes in that specific field.
Talk therapy involves a conversation between two people: you and your therapist. This relationship is the basis of any successful therapy regimen. While you might have found a therapist who has strong experience in your needed area of expertise, it’s important that you feel comfortable sharing your thoughts and feelings with them.
Vulnerability is at the heart of successful therapy, so it’s vital that you find a good counselor that you feel comfortable sharing with. It's okay if the first therapist you meet is not the right fit. Your relationship with your therapist is nuanced, and it may take a few tries until you find the right match for you.
A recent survey conducted by Mental Health America shows that more than half of Americans who struggle with mental health disorders choose not to pursue treatment because they feel they can’t afford it. This does not have to be the case.
Most health insurance policies cover mental health treatment. Advekit can help you understand how you can use your insurance benefits and pay less out of pocket, especially if you have an out-of-network provider.
Making a financial plan for investing in your mental healthcare is highly recommended. The last thing someone seeking psychological support needs is added stress that comes from going to therapy that’s too expensive!
Only you know whether your therapist is a good fit or not. Be sure to practice mindfulness during your therapy sessions and track your progress. Ask yourself questions like: “do I feel safe to express myself here?” and “is my mental health improving?” It’s important to check in with yourself while receiving support from a therapist. We encourage sharing feedback directly with your therapist so they understand how you feel about your progress.
Alison LaSov, LMFT
Alison LaSov is a Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist with experience treating clients struggling with anxiety and depression. She predominantly focuses on mental health intervention for children and adolescents, particularly those who are in crisis. She has worked within the Los Angeles education system treating students with Individualized Education Plans (IEPs), as well as supervised a non-profit Teen Crisis Hotline out of Cedars-Sinai Hospital. Alison earned her B.A. from UCLA and M.A. from Pepperdine University. She is a native to Los Angeles and co-founder at Advekit.