So, you’ve done it. You’re attending therapy. You’ve made the phone call, scheduled the time and date and you’re going to go see a new therapist for the first time. The day your appointment is scheduled comes and you are suddenly overwhelmed with anxiety as you attempt to reason with yourself as to why you shouldn’t go.
Dear reader, if this is you, I want you to know that you are not alone in this. I myself felt that very same feeling when I first went to therapy many years ago.
Since becoming a therapist myself, many of my clients have also reported these very same feelings when attending therapy.
So, before you cancel your appointment or choose not to go, let’s have a brief moment to calm our bodies and decide what is the best decision.
I want you to take a deep breath in through your nose, hold it for a few seconds, and then breathe out through your mouth. Place both of your feet on the ground and sit comfortably while doing this exercise. Take a few breaths like this and even close your eyes if you wish.
How are you feeling?
Still a little nervous?
Don’t worry, lets discuss it.
What is it that is stopping you from attending your appointment?
What are the feelings you’re feeling. Maybe you’re feeling a little nervous about meeting and talking to a stranger?
Maybe you’ve had therapy in the past and it wasn’t quite what you wanted or expected? Or maybe its something different entirely?
That’s ok. Its normal to have these kinds of thoughts before trying something new. But if I may for a moment empathetically challenge your thought for a moment, are these maybe some of the thoughts – this anxiety, this fear, this regret – that maybe you want to talk to someone about in the first place?
If that is the case, this to me highlights a solid reason for you to give your therapist a shot and see how your first session goes. Again, perhaps this is not the case. Only you will truly know what it is that is making you feel like you shouldn’t attend your session.
Whatever the case it is for you, you should be proud that you booked this appointment in the first place. It shows a willingness that you have to improve your own health and wellbeing.
It’s not easy and going to the appointment may still cause you to feel very nervous, but remind yourself, you are going for a purpose that is very important.
You booked your session seeking help for yourself and even though it might be scary, you are worthy of trying something new.
Written by Evan Morris