The right counselor or life coach.
You’ll invest time, energy, and probably some money finding the right therapist or coach. Timing-when you’re right in the middle of a crisis or need to feel better fast-can make it even more stressful. Don’t worry. Your natural process of selection is at work no matter what. Follow these three tips and it will be even smoother:
1. Trust yourself. Listen to your gut.
If you get an uneasy sense or bad feeling, trust it. That’s your gut instinct talking to you.
I’m saying this first because you may or may not have a developed sense of your own instincts. You may have a habit of ignoring them.
And if you are good at listening to them, now is the time to pay attention. I promise you this: the gut knows; it will not steer you wrong. (Need help identifying this or paying attention? We can work on that!)
2. Engage yourself. Do a little thinking.
You already know a ton about how you’re made and what you need.
If you take time to write down what you know, your chances of finding it increase tremendously. (It almost feels like magic, but research supports writing it down works!)
Stuck? Ask yourself two questions:
In past relationships with doctors, dentists, teachers, athletic coaches, yoga instructors (whoever has been in a position to help with your health and achievement) what has pissed you off? Seriously, think of your pet peeve in those situations. Is it someone bossy? harsh? arrogant? hyper?
Now think about the best relationships in that context if you’ve had them. What was good?
Was it a gentle dentist? Did your doctor really listen? Did a teacher do a good job explaining why?
Use the good and bad information to help define what you’re looking for.
- I need a good listener, who can communicate understanding, who doesn’t do all the talking.
- I don’t want someone to stare at me blankly while I try to figure things out on my own.
- I need someone with an easy sense of humor.
- I need someone I know cares who will challenge me when I need it.
By all means, once you have prepared by doing this work, share your list of needs with a potential therapist. He or she should be able to tell you if and how they can be that for you. It also gives them a chance to let you know they can’t.
3. Honor yourself. Your feelings matter.
It’s normal to be nervous about entering this kind of relationship. It’s normal if you’re scared. It’s normal to feel incredibly vulnerable and uncertain.
Of course you feel that way! You are preparing to spill your guts about the hardest parts of your life with someone you don’t even know yet.
Because you matter, keep in mind these three things:
- know your feelings are real and normal
- put some thought into defining exactly what you need (in writing is best)
- trust your gut and go with it.
Be encouraged; you will make a good, helpful connection. Your healing and growth depends on it! A little preparation, a little action and you will definitely find your person. Let me know if you think we are a good fit. You’re the expert on you and I’d be honored to join you. Give me a call.