Therapists probably differ from each other as much as their clients. Therefore, one therapist’s theories, ideas, opinions, and treatment techniques may just contradict another therapist’s. But how do you know which therapist is best for you?
Why is every therapist different?
It may sound strange, but it’s actually a good thing that there are so many different therapists. It means there is a therapist and treatment plan to suit each and every person. And that’s important because with psychological complaints it is not always immediately clear how the problems can be solved. This differs from person to person and that is why the solutions are so different. What works for one person may make no difference for another.
How do I choose a therapist who is right for me?
Are you seeing a therapist for the first time and don’t know how to choose the right one? Then ask yourself the questions below.
What kind of person is the therapist?
A good relationship with your therapist is the most important thing for the therapy to be successful. Many therapists put some general information about themselves on their website. For example about their age, place of residence, family, hobbies, or leisure activities. What kind of person is the therapist? And do you identify with them?
What kind of lifestyle does the therapist lead?
If your mental health problems are related to your lifestyle (your marriage, your children, or your job, for example) you may find it helpful to talk to someone who has experience with your situation. Is the therapist married? Does he or she have children? The Online Therapists, for example, works a lot with therapists who live abroad and are, therefore, extremely good at empathizing with expat-related problems.
What techniques does the therapist use?
Before choosing a therapist, delve a little deeper into the psychological treatment techniques that appeal to you. Therapists often use talking techniques (cognitive behavioral therapy), but may also work with body-oriented therapy (movement therapy or EMDR therapy), creative or alternative forms of therapy (mindfulness or hypnotherapy), or group therapy. The differences in the effectiveness of these techniques are minimal. Their success depends to a large extent on the trust you have in the working method of the therapist.
How do the conversations take place?
Sure, you can sit on the couch with a therapist for an hour at a practice, but these days there are many alternative ways to get therapy. Are you still a little hesitant about going to a therapist? Then you might find online therapy more enjoyable. Online therapy is accessible because you do not have to go to a practice and you can have the conversations at your own kitchen table. You can even choose to only email or chat with some therapists.
Moreover, according to research, online therapy gives the same results as face-to-face conversations. In both cases, you have made the choice to face your problems and do something about them. That is often already half the battle!
Have you done all the preliminary work and chosen a therapist or practice that appeals to you? Then it’s just a matter of trying! You never know if you will click with the therapist until you actually start talking to him or her. Start therapy with the idea that it’s perfectly normal to switch therapists if you still don’t feel comfortable or confident after a few sessions.
How do you know if you have chosen an appropriate therapist?
You know you have chosen a therapist who is a good fit for you when you feel at ease, heard, and understood. The therapist can summarize your vague complaints and reduce them to one or a few problems in a clear way. Then he or she is clear about the method and treatment plan, and they also check whether you feel comfortable with this. The therapist sometimes steers you in a certain direction and gives advice, but does not judge you or lecture you. In short, you have confidence in the professionalism of the therapist and the success of the treatment.
Therapists at The Online Therapists
The Online Therapists will help you to find a therapist who is right for you. We will have an introductory meeting with you, during which we will map out your situation, personality, specific problems, and preferences. We will then match you with a therapist who we think will be a good fit for you. This therapist will draw up a treatment plan based on an initial consultation so that you know exactly where you stand and whether this is something for you. Since we work with many therapists, it is also easy to switch therapists if necessary!
Want to get to know us first?
Request an online consultation with one of our trusted online therapists.