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DO I NEED THERAPY?



By Emma Nel – Counselling Psychologist | Psych Central


One of the most common questions people ask me is “do I need to be here?” or “Is therapy

even for me?”. Firstly, I want to acknowledge that everyone can benefit from therapy. There

is a misconception that therapy is for people who are very ill or facing severe challenges.

This is certainly not true. Therapy can help with day-to-day challenges, difficult events in our

life, improve our coping skills and emotional regulation as well as provide a safe objective

space to share what you are feeling and thinking.


So yes – therapy is for everyone!


That being said, there are some specific things that may indicate that you could benefit from

therapy.


1. You are struggling to control your emotions

It is normal to feel sad, angry, anxious and irritable at times. However, if you are finding

yourself feeling these emotions very often and you are struggling to control them you

might benefit from therapy. Therapy can help you learn how to manage your emotions

and can help identify where these emotions may be coming from.


2. You are struggling at work

We all go through dips in our lives but if you are losing joy in your day-to-day activities

and struggling to finish your work or tasks needed in these areas of life it may be

important to consider therapy. Burnout and challenges with colleagues and bosses can

be very draining and a psychologist can help you work through these challenges.


3. You have experienced trauma

Trauma can refer to a variety of experiences. As South Africans most of us have

experienced trauma in one form of another. Trauma has a way of affecting us all in

different ways. Therapy can provide a safe space to process any trauma you may have

experienced.


Examples of trauma many South Africans experience:

  • Bullying in schools or work place

  • Community Violence, Crime Events: High Jacking, Armed Robberies

  • Early Childhood Trauma

  • Intimate Partner Violence, Domestic Violence

  • Medical Trauma

  • Physical Abuse


4. You are experiencing changes in your appetite or sleeping patterns or feeling constantly exhausted

Our physical health and mental health are very closely linked. Changes in our physical

health can indicate potential challenges in our mental health. These can be signs of more

serious mental health challenges. Therapy can help you improve these challenges and

find out if there is a possible cause to these changes.


5. You are struggling with the relationships around you

Our relationships with those around are so important. Whether it’s a romantic

relationship, friendship, family member or professional relationship. Therapy can help

improve social skills, navigate challenges in relationships, provide skills to improve these

relationships and provide insight into your role in your relationships.


6. You would like to experience personal growth and learn more about yourself

Therapy is a safe space to explore your identify, values, beliefs, goals and anything that

is important to you. A psychologist can help you learn more about yourself and improve

in areas you may be concerned about.


7. You are experiencing a transition in life

Starting a new phase in life can be very daunting. Whether it’s a new job, degree, or

moving schools therapy can be beneficial. Perhaps, you have just gotten married, had a

baby, gotten divorced or lost someone close to you. Therapy can provide you with a

space to process these changes in your life and equip you with skills to manage the new

demands or challenges you face in this transition.


8. Some serious concerns

If you are experiencing any of the following it is recommended that you seriously

consider therapy:

o Any suicidal thoughts

o Using any substances (alcohol, drugs etc.)

o Struggling with your eating patterns, relationship with food or body image


In summary therapy can help you process

any trauma or life transitions/

events that you may be facing.


Therapy can help you build more meaningful and satisfying relationships.

Furthermore, therapy can help you manage your emotions and manage any anxiety or

suicidal thoughts. As well as improving sleep and appetite challenges. This can help improve

your overall happiness and satisfaction in life. Lastly, therapy can help you learn more about

yourself and help you grow in all areas of your life.


It is very important to remember that reaching out for help is not a sign of weakness. It can

be incredibly difficult to seek help.


It's a brave step towards your healing.


If you are interested/ ready for therapy contact Psych Central to book with your preferred therapist.


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