Table of contents:
- I remember my first meeting with a psychologist, many years ago. When negotiating a consultation, I asked if I needed to somehow prepare for it. My psychologist replied: “No, nothing is needed. Just be yourself. "
- I don't need a shrink
- Sitting with a friend in the kitchen, talking out properly - that's all psychotherapy
- I, of course, have problems, but not so serious as to go to a psychologist
- Getting to know yourself
- Understanding your feelings and states
- Psychological safety
- Taking care of yourself
- Responsibility for your life
- How does all this become possible?
Video: Why Go To A Psychologist? - Self-development
2023 Author: Oswald Adamson | [email protected]. Last modified: 2023-05-21 20:18
I remember my first meeting with a psychologist, many years ago. When negotiating a consultation, I asked if I needed to somehow prepare for it. My psychologist replied: “No, nothing is needed. Just be yourself. "
To be yourself is, in general, the main goal with which we all turn to psychologists. Although initially we have other tasks: to improve relations, to deal with fears, to survive stress - but you never know what else. But the result of all the changes that occur as a result is a return to oneself. The ability to be aware of and accept oneself, to know one's own characteristics and needs. True, it all sounds rather abstract, until you feel it on yourself. And turning to a psychologist is still perceived by many people as some kind of extreme measure.
I don't need a shrink
In fact, the psychologist will not "rule" anything in you. It will not even make diagnoses, as well as from the first meeting, to see something about you that you yourself may not know. The mythological collective image of a psychologist is something between a psychiatrist, a magician and a soothsayer.
Depending on his specialization and, of course, your request, a psychologist can work with feelings, behavior, attitudes, childhood experiences. But for sure - not to heal, not to predict the future and not to "edit" anything in the client. And if something like this happens, this is a reason to be wary.
Sitting with a friend in the kitchen, talking out properly - that's all psychotherapy
Speaking out and crying - this really often makes it easier. So maybe this is what psychotherapy is about? Of course not. Support from family and friends is a great value, and it's great that you already have it. However, as much as our mothers, fathers, girlfriends and friends love us, they are not our therapists.
It's good if conversations in the kitchen take place in a space of security and support, if we are really loved and understood. But solving deep internal problems through them is about the same as treating caries with plasticine. And it is definitely not worth placing such responsibility on loved ones.
I, of course, have problems, but not so serious as to go to a psychologist
For some reason, the opinion is widespread that only a person with "everything is really bad" can go to a psychologist. What exactly is meant by this is not always clear - usually something between very difficult life circumstances and a mental disorder. In practice, psychologists are consulted in a variety of situations, which are not always critical.
They come then to make a choice, to make a decision. To better understand the growing child. To clarify the relationship with the spouse, and not the fact that the relationship fails. In general, the habit of going to a psychologist not only when it is bad is a healthy habit.
Many who undergo long-term therapy do not do so at all because they are in an endless crisis. They just like the result as a completely new quality of life
So what happens to a person's life as a result of therapy? Why do people continue to visit psychologists, even if the crisis is over? One of my colleagues aptly compared this process to going to the gym. Only muscles do not "swing", but certain skills, which subsequently gradually change our reactions, behavior, attitude towards anything. First of all, perhaps, to myself.
Getting to know yourself
It sounds strange, but getting to know yourself and even getting to know yourself again is exactly a skill. If we live with someone close or just communicate often, we constantly learn something new about them. Sometimes this new addition supplements the already available information, sometimes it surprises, delights, upsets. But with yourself it is more difficult.
Firstly, few people are used to observing, realizing, reflecting. Secondly, learning new things about yourself is scary. Suddenly it will be something unpleasant - and then what to do about it? What if I realize that I am not living the life I would like, doing the wrong thing? After such realizations, there is no getting away from some decisions, and even actions. And it's scary.
Understanding your feelings and states
What do we usually do with fear, anxiety, anger, longing, grief? That's right: we strive to overcome, get rid of. Do not touch. As a result, many feelings, not experienced, and often completely unconscious, continue to live inside, manifesting later in the form of diseases. Psychotherapy makes it possible not to run away from feelings, but to be able to handle them. A nice bonus: you also begin to understand the feelings of other people better.
We are well aware that you need to close the door in the house. That you shouldn't get into a stranger's car. That, having stepped on a nail, you need to see a doctor as soon as possible. We were taught all this in childhood. It is much more difficult to realize the boundaries of your own "I".
To see and respect other people's boundaries for yourself. Distinguish manipulation from sincere words. Feel the line between trust and gullibility. Where to learn all this? In this case, meetings with a psychologist become a "training ground" from where we transfer the acquired skills into our own life, our relationships.
Taking care of yourself
This skill can only be learned in close connection with the previous three. You can’t take care of a person whose characteristics, weaknesses and needs are unknown to you. It’s just as difficult to help someone whose feelings you don’t understand - it’s like trying to wrap a child warmly, who is actually crying from being hungry. It's the same with security.
What if I'm already an adult and I'm being monitored? If I live on someone else's behest? Can't make a single independent decision? Or, on the contrary, do I have too much under control and go crazy with anxiety if anything escapes my zone of influence? How to take care of yourself here? This can be learned too.
Responsibility for your life
Doesn't sound very attractive. It seems that we are constantly responsible for something, isn't that so? However, voluntary responsibility is very different from forced responsibility. In the process of psychotherapy, a person suddenly catches himself on the fact that he no longer wants to go with the flow. Agree with how "the circumstances turned out."
If he has the slightest opportunity to change something in his life for the better, he will certainly try to do it. And if there is no opportunity, then he looks for it - or options for how to do better in the existing conditions. He suddenly has the strength, and most importantly - interest. If earlier he felt fear, indifference, powerlessness in relation to his present and future, now it is interest.
How does all this become possible?
I suspect that for many, everything written above sounds like a fairy tale. And I would like to believe, but life has weaned off believing in fairy tales. But the people who underwent psychotherapy, I think, recognized their own experience in all of the above. And they can confirm: yes, this is really happening.
The psychologist does not work magic. It creates a therapeutic space in which you can meet what is scary, painful, incomprehensible. Meet, without harming yourself, but, on the contrary, learning something. It is not always comfortable to enter this space, but there is support. And also - an understanding of why this is being done
Doing something for the sake of changing your own life is, in a sense, the path of a hero. Not a hero from science fiction films. Ordinary, flawed, vulnerable. Alive. What any of us can become.