Give yourself more than one therapist session to get comfortablewavebreakmedia/Shutterstock
Change doesn’t miraculously happen overnight. Therapy takes time and work to get where you want to be emotionally and mentally. For therapy novices, the first session is always a bit nerve-racking, but don’t let those first time jitters scare you away before you give them a chance. “If there’s a lot going on it may be difficult to get the actual therapy work right at first,” says Dr. Londoño-McConnell. “We [may] need to stabilize a crisis, get resources for this person, or get a good clinical picture first.” Give your potential therapist at least three to five sessions before calling it quits and looking elsewhere.
Ask yourself if you’re the issueGaudiLab/Shutterstock
As hard as it is to accept, you may be the one sabotaging your chances of having a productive therapy session, not your therapist. “I think it’s important for a patient to be able to say, ‘I’m starting to feel less comfortable being here,’ which allows the therapist and patient to determine if it’s the normal process of resistance or if the therapist is pushing the patient before he or she is ready,” says Dr. Tasso. “As you start to hit on some core themes, there’s frequently a part of us we are not aware of that says, ‘Oh, this is a little bit uncomfortable.’” Therapy is supposed to challenge you. Be willing to take a step out of your comfort zone to work through major obstacles before you get to the easy stuff. Keep an eye out for these tell-tale signs that you’re the toxic one in the relationship.