Picking the right therapist for you is one of the best first steps to confront your mental health needs with warmth and understanding.
Finding the right therapist is not just about finding someone who is qualified (definitely check their credentials and ensure they are a licensed professional) but it’s also about finding someone who makes you feel comfortable – where you can be unfiltered. Did you know it’s not just the sessions that support your healing but the relationship with your therapist, too? That partnership is part of the process! Being able to speak with someone openly and look forward to sessions to unload what’s on your mind throughout the week will in itself help you feel better.
Here are my 5 tips for finding the right therapist for you:
- Take advantage of free consultation calls!
Most therapists offer a free 15-minute consultation call. This is an opportunity for you to ask questions and ensure the therapist is the right fit for you. During this call, you can clarify questions, ask about their approach, and use it as an opportunity to interview your future therapist! It’s always okay to reach out to multiple therapists and decide who feels right for you.
2. Write out what qualities make you feel comfortable
We all have different qualities that make us feel like our most authentic self. It may be someone who gently challenges us, it may be someone who has a sense of humor, it may be someone who has a calming voice, it may be someone who has a really animated demeanor. Take some time to think about what qualities in others make you feel the most disarmed. Use that attribute list and see which therapists fit that list most closely.
3. Check multiple directories
It can be hard to know where to start when finding the right therapist. Check multiple directories. I highly recommend helloalma.com and psychology today. Both of these offer a list of therapists that you can also filter by what insurance they accept and price range to ensure you are working with a list that is most applicable for you.
4. It’s okay to filter for what makes you feel seen
All therapists are trained and expected to gain cultural humility and support your needs on multiple levels. This means, you should be able to go to any therapist and know that you will be accepted, valued, and supported for who you are. At the same time, sometimes clients prefer to see a therapist who looks like them or someone who understands cultural context without you having to explain it first. If this is the case, it’s okay to look for therapists that are within your same cultural context. There may be directories that filter that for you as well such as southasiantherapists.org
5. Think about the type of therapy you’re looking for
Each therapist will hone in on a different specialty. Take some time to consider what areas of your life you want to see the most improvement and see if there’s a therapist who includes that in their description. Are you looking to overcome overthinking? Are you looking to find help with catastrophizing thoughts? Search these keywords and see who comes up!
Want to know what makes clinical social workers unique therapists? Check out the blog post here.
Want to try a free consultation call with me? Schedule here.