Counselling can offer a space where the focus is on you. Just you. It offers a place where you can speak your unspoken thoughts and feelings, helping you to process and ultimately have greater control of them. It can help you towards a better understanding of what you are feeling.
If you are new to counselling, it can seem like stepping into a strange world which might feel intimidating and off-putting. Where do you start? There are so many counsellors out there and so many different types of counselling. How can you know which is right for you? It can be useful to consider how far you are prepared to travel to see someone and then use that as a starting point.
Next, it might be worth considering what your budget is. Counselling is an investment in yourself and it is important that you find the right person to work with. Many counsellors will offer free initial meetings to help you decide if you can see yourself talking about things that you might not have spoken about to anyone else, without having to spend any money upfront.
When you meet a counsellor, don’t be afraid to ask them questions about who they are and the way in which they work. It is really important that you understand how they will be working with you and that you have a clear sense of whether this is right for you. The relationship you have with your counsellor is so important and will determine how successful your counselling is likely to be. Does it feel as though you have a connection with them? Does it feel as though they ‘get’ you? Do you feel at ease with them? And, on a practical level, check their availability with your own.
Think about how you feel in the counselling space. Does it feel safe? Relaxing? Comfortable? The more comfortable you feel, the more positive your experience of counselling will be. Counselling is something which happens with you, not to you and having the space to talk through your circumstances and make sense of them is the first step in seeing them for what they are and finding a way forward.