Getting a diagnosis for bipolar disorder is not only challenging to accept for the patient but also for their family members. Although the illness takes years to confirm, the parents and siblings who have always been by their side undoubtedly wish that the disease is something else – something curable. After all, nobody wants to believe that his or her loved one has a condition that will continue to weaken that person throughout their life until the test results are out.
Many people tend to think that counseling is only for one’s mental health or marital issues. What they forget is that some career counselors help individuals recognize their potential in their professions. Others may think this is unnecessary, but it may actually have present vital benefits for people today. As Hannah Goodman, LMHC explains, “Therapy is linked to health benefits that can ripple out to positively impact your work and career (and overall happiness!) and help you avoid costly healthcare bills.”
If you’re considering seeing a career counselor, but aren’t entirely convinced, here are some reasons why you should get an appointment as soon as you can.
Clarify Career Goals
It’s hard to build a career without having any clear objective. While it’s good to go out and experiment to see what it is you want to do in the future, you can’t do so forever. At some point, you’re going to have to set your foot down and make decisions and goals.
This is where your counselor comes in. They’re trained to help you identify specific targets that are feasible, timely and reasonable. This way you can make sure that you can actually realistically achieve them.
Identify Strengths And Weaknesses
If you’ve ever been interviewed before, be it for work or for the university, you’ll know that one of the most typical questions they ask is “what are your strengths and weaknesses?” So that you don’t find yourself scrambling for an answer, you should figure this out beforehand.
Admittedly, it may be difficult to have an objective awareness of your faults and assets. You may not realize that you have some good abilities and skills that are perfect for the workplace. Likewise, you may not also notice habits and traits you have that are unfavorable to coworkers and employers. A career counselor will be able to help you identify these from an objective standpoint.
“Use your strengths of critical thinking and hope to look at any negative situation in a fresh way. You might tap into hope to see how there are benefits to the stressor. ” –Ryan M. Niemiec Psy.D.
Learn Effective Communication And Networking Skills
It’s true that those who find success in their careers owe it to having a good network of contacts. The idea of networking and socializing may be daunting to some. It’s difficult enough ordering that daily cup of coffee from a barista you’ve already spoken to several times, what more when you’re talking to potential employers and co-workers in a business environment?
But having an extensive network opens up so many opportunities. The idea is for both you and your newfound contacts to be able to benefit from your connection. One connection leads to another and another and so on. These contacts can potentially help you land a job or connect you with big players in the industry.
A counselor can help you get ready for such events and situations. You’ll have the benefit of practicing with only a single person for a while before they help you by trying out the real deal. Chris Corbett, PsyD once said, “Many people also find that counselors can be a tremendous asset to managing personal growth, interpersonal relationships, family concerns, marriage issues, and the hassles of daily life.” He’s right with that.
Gain Knowledge Regarding Professional Requirements
The first thing employers screen with applicants is their resume or their curriculum vitae (CV). Would you know what the differences between these two are? Do you know how to prepare a cover letter? These are absolute essentials when seeking employment.
A career counselor will be able to guide you through these requirements. You’ll be able to know how to improve your resume or CV so that it stands out from the rest. They’ll also be able to coach you on basic etiquette during interviews as well as dress codes and policies.
Therefore, if you are still unsure of what you should do for your career, having a career counseling is not a bad idea. It will help you from preventing yourself from going into a profession that you have zero interest and saving you from wasting your time.
More or less, each person has a left and right side of their brains. Left brain, meaning, inclined to numeracy and with logical functions. The right side of the brain, on the other hand, is used to cater to artistic capability, imagination, and the more creative sphere.
What Does This Mean?
Not all people are wired the same way. As Stacy Donn Cristo, LMHC emphasizes, “Many people turn to therapy because they feel as though they are not functioning.” Some individuals are more functional using their right brain, and there are others who are using their left brain more.
In therapy, verbal communication is often used as the primary tool to engage the patient. However, not all people can respond to oral communication in the same manner. As such, are you aware of that in therapy, creativity can be increasingly utilized? That therapy and creativity can actually jive together? Know more about it here.
What Is The Importance Of Creativity In Therapy?
Through creative pursuits, people can reveal their innermost feelings without even talking. It can serve as an outlet for many kinds of patients in therapy. Furthermore, this approach can be used and greatly help when the patient has gone through traumatic experiences.
Moreover, using creative approaches to therapy may also be used in engaging children. Most children enjoy drawing out what they have imagined. In the same manner, children tend to express repressed emotions through drawings or other creative outlets like poems and stories. Most of the time, there is no fine line between reality and imagination for children. As such, they are most likely to respond to this kind of therapy.
“The art *process* itself is where the magic happens! It is not about making “good” art — this art is from the inside and it is not always going to look “pretty.” –Elena Lamaak, MA, LMHC
For adults, there are also existing kinds of therapy that integrate the greater use of the patient’s imagination to foster increased mental awareness for patients. For example, there are activities in therapy where the patients are required to translate their negative emotions into drawings, so that they may be aware of it and prevent themselves into going more in-depth into those emotions in the future.
The importance of this kind of therapy is that the patients will be able to illustrate feelings they are having trouble expressing. During this moment the person can freely say anything, no matter how trivial, for him to go through the depths of his imagination and cognition.
Using the principle stated above, because there are differences on how people are wired, some individuals may greatly benefit from when using the creative approach and may even respond positively.
At first, the therapist and the patient may go through a rough start since sharing one’s creative nature is indeed uncomfortable, but once they freely explore them and let their minds wander, then will that individual be able to free himself from the shackles of a deep emotional slump.The therapist may incorporate creativity into every session.
“There are various uses for art therapy with regards to healing, but the benefits may surprise you if you’ve never heard of art as a form of therapy.” Douglas Mitchell, LMFT said. This kind of therapy might expose emotions which are previously unknown to the patient.
Thus, the therapist’s job in this kind of approach is not to be taken lightly because the therapist will be the one to handle and process these raw emotions professionally.
In this time and age, different kinds of therapy are already available for patients. While this type of therapy may further enhance the experience of patients in therapy, it is important to note that the higher burden of healing lies with the support of friends and family.
Most people, even the elders,and professionals become nervous and anxious before they meet their therapists. In fact, people who are suffering from mental health problems avoid one-on-one therapy sessions because of the required presence of a stranger (a.k.a therapist or psychiatrist).
Choosing the person the spend your days with is one of the most important decisions you will make — and I’m not just talking about your future spouse. With doctors, hairdressers and tailors, you can’t always rely on just anyone. The same goes for your therapist.
To make sure you’re seeing the right therapist for you, here are some things to consider.
You Don’t Know Them Personally
As people will often advise you, don’t work with family or friends. Likewise, don’t hire a therapist that you know outside of this environment. Distant acquaintances may still hold, but even casual friends are off-limits when choosing your counselor.
As it goes, it may be difficult to separate your work relationship from your personal relationship, even if your friend is a stellar professional. Being entirely objective is never a guarantee. Likewise, you risk personal relationships falling apart or being affected in some way. This is also part of basic ethics of all specialists when working.
They’re Available When You Need Them
When it comes to your therapist, you need to see someone who’s there for you when you need them. You shouldn’t have to force yourself to adapt to their schedule. Find someone whose hours work well with your timeline and needs. Remember, “While many therapists are qualified to treat common challenges such as anxiety or depression, if you are interested in working with a specialist to address a specific challenge, you should consider looking out-of-network.” A reminder from Stacy Donn Cristo, LMHC
Likewise, many therapists will allow their patients to contact them outside of sessions. If you find your counselor unable to return your calls, pick up or respond to e-mails, you might want to consider looking for someone on a more similar schedule as you.
They Aren’t Scared To Tell You The Truth But Are Mindful
Again, your therapist is not necessarily your friend: they are your therapist. And when their objective is to help you get better, sometimes some tough love is needed. They have to be able to tell you the truth about your condition and the issues you’re dealing with. However, therapists don’t have to be hurtful to it either by being honest when needed and giving helpful criticism or advice.
Moreover, they have to be able to tell you if they can help you or not. The first session spent with therapists is often a way of determining if they are capable of supporting you with your problems. Therapists are not specialists in every disorder, and it’s essential to find the right one who can give you relevant and expert advice specifically for your condition. But one thing is certain, “Through simple and direct counsel and coaching you may discover great potentials that can move your job and career to a positive place you never thought possible.” Chris Oneth LMFT said.
You Feel Challenged
To find growth and progress, you have to step out of your comfort zone. This is especially true with therapy. Occasional moments of discomfort is a sign of success towards overcoming your personal demons. Your counselor has to be able to challenge you in a way that you don’t stay too lenient and not find improvement with anything.
“The foundation of therapy is based on the relationship you build with your therapist. When seeking someone out it’s important you feel comfortable with them.” Elana Schechtman-Gil LMFT stated. That being said, it isn’t right if you only ever feel uncomfortable. You and your therapist have to be able to find a way to strike a balance between needed comfort and significant challenges. Only then will you find yourself on the path towards recovery or improvement.
Lately, people have come to discuss depression and mental health, in general, more openly as awareness is raised. While many people often discuss the struggles of trying to get better, the road to recovery may come with more complexities than people realize.
Even as one learns to manage their depression, there’s always a risk of relapse occurring. To
prevent this from happening, read on.
It’s hard to face depression and other mental health problems when you’re alone. Getting through a slump is made more difficult because of the widespread stigma that comes with visiting medical professionals for your psychological health.
But you don’t have any choice, right? If you want to get over your dilemma, you will have to choose to visit a medical professional anyway. It can become uncomfortable when you’re sharing your struggle with a complete stranger. How can you warm up immediately to a person when you’re feeling a lot of emotions?
It’s a relief therefore that group therapy is becoming popular now. “[T]here is encouragement to both talk about your life outside the group and also to talk about the dynamics within the group.” Psychotherapist Ali Miller, MFT said. But you may be asking how can group therapy help you. Look no more. We’ll give you a brief overview of what it is and how can it helps.
What Is Group Therapy?
Strength in numbers. This concept does not only apply to sports, but also to therapy. Some people who are going through psychological problems just seek the help of medical professionals to cater to their need. However, most of the people only get through by getting support from their family and friends.
This is the reason group therapy can be very beneficial and sometimes be more advantageous compared to individual therapy. Group therapy lets people who are going through the same problem to open up to each other thus giving them the idea that they are not alone in their struggles.
Unlike individual therapy where the person may be more reluctant to express themselves, group therapy provides a cushion for the person to share their thoughts since people who are listening know what the other person is going through. “Bring the right people into your life.” says Deborah Khoshaba Psy.D.
Joining a group regularly can also keep you accountable for your actions. Through group therapy, people are often asking about their daily activities. If you are already given a solution to your previous dilemma, more often than not, you will prevent this problem from recurring.
How Can Group Therapy Positively Affect Me?
In group therapy, you are grouped with people who share more or less the same sentiments. You can share your experiences and struggles. More often than not, they can help change how you view your problem.
Through their experiences, you get ideas on how you should handle your issues. You can learn a lot from the experiences of other people from a different background. You need not go through the same path again if you already learned about it from another person.
“We only have control of ourselves and our own desire for growth and change. Part of that growth and change is deciding the type of person we allow in our lives, and the positive impact they can have on us.” Nikki Martinez, Psy.D. LCPC said. Participating in group therapy is a rewarding and fulfilling experience. Sharing your lives and experiences with each other can bring about a bond you will not be able to find anywhere else. Moreover, because you are sharing your most profound struggles, sharing is never superficial. You are bound to expose your bare self to other participants in the group. As such, you are sure to find lifelong friends along the way.
Group therapy has its advantages. However, these do not lead to benefits immediately. People who are new to these kinds of treatment are unable to share their experiences immediately. Upon seeing themselves in other people in the group, one can quickly look at the differences in approaches and mindset. Eventually, upon warming up to these people, they can share more and contribute to a fruitful discussion.