Therapy is an investment of your time and resources. Therefore, it is crucial to find the right fit. There are as many different kinds of therapists as there are clients. You will like some of them and others not so much. You would not buy the first car you ever test drove, and the same is true for finding a therapist. Therapy is hard work, good, but often hard and sometimes a bit scary. So it is simply easier and more effective to go through the process with someone that you can build trust.
Goodness of Fit – Some therapists offer what is called a goodness of fit appointment. This is a free fifteen to thirty-minute consultation to explore if both parties think they are a good match. Many studies have shown that the number one indicator of whether or not a person makes progress toward their therapeutic goals is based on the quality of the therapeutic relationship….how well you like, respect, and get on with your therapist and they you.
What are you looking for in a therapist? Some things to consider before you commit.
Gender – is the gender of the therapist important to you?
Culture/Race – Do you want your therapist to share a similar culture or race?
Age – Would you feel more secure with a younger therapist or someone older?
Religion – Do you want a therapist that shares your religious beliefs or lack thereof?
Location – Being on time for your appointments is important. Can you reach their location easily? Is telehealth (phone or video) a good option?
Insurance or Private Pay – Is the therapist covered by your health insurance? Some therapists accept insurance, and others are private pay only. If you want to find a therapist covered by your insurance, the best place to start is by reaching out to your health insurance company for a list of approved clinicians accepting new clients. If you are paying for therapy out of pocket, then you have more flexibility.
Specialties – There are many different therapeutic modalities. If you want to address a specific issue, you may want to see a therapist specializing in that area. Some examples are; children, couples, families, eating disorders, trauma, LGBTQ+, depression, anxiety, EMDR, Brainspotting, CBT, DBT, self-harm, etc.… Is there an area of specialization that fits your needs?