three things i learned from counseling.

I just left my last counseling appointment.

Mind you, this is only my last counseling appointment in this season of life with this particular counselor. My counseling journey isn’t over, by any means. But for now, as of 5PM today, this chapter of my journey has come to a close.

So. What did I glean from the past few months of counseling? A couple things. Let me share them with you! Sharing is caring, after all… especially when mental health is at stake.

1. I am not broken.

I’ve written about this before, but it deserves a second mention because it is so important. A lot of people associate counseling or therapy with the notion that you are in need of “fixing”. Sometimes, I guess that could be the case. But for me, it isn’t. And hasn’t been. I am not broken. I just need help processing things in a constructive and objective way.

2. I’m pretty well adjusted even though, by all accounts, I shouldn’t be.

According to my counselor, my upbringing should have yielded me a permanent residence within an insane asylum with my very own padded room and straight-jacket wardrobe. However, in the words of Dr. Maki, I’m “really put together”. Holla at your healthy boo.

3. Being open and honest about what struggles I have has been a huge asset.

I’ve said it a hundred times and I’ll say it again — no one, including you, benefits from you hiding your hurts. Opening up about the things I’ve dealt with, to not only counselors but also mentors and friends, has been more effective in my growth and health than anything else. And yes, that includes medicinal treatment.

So. I’ll say it again. If you are considering counseling but are afraid of any stigmas attached, take it from me: do it. See a counselor. Invite an unbiased professional into your life to help walk you through what you’re going through. See how it changes you for the better!

Have you ever gone to see a counselor? How did it work out for you?

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9 thoughts on “three things i learned from counseling.

  1. I agree. I finally went for counselling last year and it totally helped me. It doesn’t mean I’m crazy. I just needed someone to talk through in a non-judgemental setting.

  2. “my upbringing should have yielded me a permanent residence within an insane asylum with my very own padded room and straight-jacket wardrobe.”

    May I add a disclaimer here and say I did the best I could with what I had?
    🙂

  3. I like when you said….

    “So. I’ll say it again. If you are considering counseling but are afraid of any stigmas attached, take it from me: do it. See a counselor. Invite an unbiased professional into your life to help walk you through what you’re going through. See how it changes you for the better!”

    I am an application away from being a licensed counselor, but what’s really difficult is I, myself, have received counseling in my life and would probably benefit from receiving more counseling in the future. The stigma is even more prominent for a person in this profession because everyone expects the counselors to have it together and know how to solve and deal with all of their problems. I tell you one thing; it’s a lot easier to help someone else with their issues because you think more rationally when your own emotions are not attached to the situation. I found it easy to put away my issues to help my clients, actually I do not even think about my issues during a counseling session. Not only because it’s the ethical thing to do, but because I want to help. It sad but I feel no one deserves such distress, but that doesn’t include myself. I wish I could feel the same way about myself that I feel about my clients. Maybe I would get a lot of growth emotionally and spiritually if I just listened to what I try to get others to understand.

    I have seen counselors before, 3 counselors, and one psychiatrist. I hated the psychiatrist because he was always trying to get me to take medication for my dysthymia instead of trying to get to the root of the issue, which is my negative thinking and negative core beliefs. The two counselors I did like, I liked because they did help me with the negative thinking. One counselor I didn’t like even though she tried. I think she just did not know how to counsel someone grieving from the loss of two children. I always tell people counselors are like doctor’s, it’s okay to get a second opinion. You have to find the one that’s right for you. But anyway, I think counseling is great! -Fant

    • this is such a great perspective.

      i, too, saw a psychiatrist at one point. after talking with me LESS THAN TEN MINUTES he diagnosed me & gave me a crap load of medication. lo and behold, the diagnosis was wrong — i wasn’t depressed, i’d just gotten out of an abusive relationship — and the “treatment” wasn’t right, either — i needed counseling, not drugs!

      pah.

      i have some friends who are counselors as well & i’ve heard them echo the same concerns. “i should have everything figured out, i shouldn’t have to see anyone.” what a terrible stigma.

      i hope you can find healing. ❤

      • Omg Thanks. Its going to be crazier because the new DSM comes out this year. In order the helping professionals can get paid for helping individuals who need counseling, they have to give a diagnosis to get paid from the insurance companies. So in the new DSM, a person who just got raped, will have a diagnosis. A person who just lost a loved one will have a diagnosis. A child who has a learning disability in school will have a diagnosis. And there are more….but I’m so tired of them trying to label everything. It does increase the stigma people have of wanting help and getting help. Thanks again though, I hope we both can find healing! Sending positive energy and prayers your way -Fant

  4. Wow – love your post! You are a brave person – you have the courage to admit what you need and then go and get it! (“I just need help processing things in a constructive and objective way.”). I wish there were more people like you – thanks for sharing your perspective. I hope it leads others to seek out the help they need. – Sandy Walker, Freedom Coach

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