Why going for therapy should no longer be a taboo

 

 

Why going for therapy should no longer be a taboo

 

Therapy is like a marathon, it’s meant to be slow but you know that you will reach your end at 26 miles. Like a marathon, there is a lot of preparations to be done before you commit yourself. In my case, it took me a lot of convincing to seek help, and once I was comfortable with the idea of therapy, I started to research the different types of therapy available in London.

 

There are a lot of different types of therapy available (there are more than fifty types of therapeutic approaches) and from my personal experience, it’s not a one-size-fits-all experience. You do have to try to find what’s right for you.

 

I am going to list down the most common types of therapy.

 

Cognitive or Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT)

 

Probably the most well-known approach as it’s offered by the NHS, CBT treats thinking that leads to maladaptive behaviours, mental illness and negative emotion.

 

Psychoanalytic or Psychodynamic Therapy

 

The psychodynamic approach explores unconscious feelings/thoughts and the impact of the past on the present. It is the oldest type of psychotherapy and closest to what Freud created

 

Existential Therapy

 

This approach emphasises and helps clients manage aspects of the human condition, including the givens of human existence: isolation, meaningless, mortality and freedom.

 

Gestalt Therapy

 

Gestalt therapy emphasises personal responsibility and helps the client to focus on the present. It stresses the development of the therapist-client relationship, the social context of the client’s life, awareness, attitudes and direct feelings and perceptions rather an interpretation.

 

 

 

So how do you choose what’s best for you?

 

I can only say based on my personal experience that you just have to do your research and don’t give up. Part of the process is to find the right therapist for you.

 

I listened to a lot of self-help podcast and I did a lot of research before committing to a treatment. I tried CBT through the NHS and I did not find it helpful. I went to several private counselling session around London and there was a lot of hit and miss.

 

Personally, Gestalt therapy has been treating me well and I am glad to (finally) found a Psychotherapist that I could trust. We are now addressing my past trauma, and the healing process but I am also aware that due to the nature of Gestalt therapy, it may not be suitable for everyone.

 

All in all, I would like to normalise therapy so that more people can take care of their mental health without feeling ashamed by the negative social stigma. As an Asian, I grew up with the mentality of “suck it in” and “let’s pretend that it didn’t happen” so the idea that I was depressed was tough to swallow because I thought that depression only happens to someone weak. I now realised that I am not weak, and therapy has been the best thing I’ve done to help myself.  

 

So, for the Mental Health Awareness 2020, let’s be kind to ourselves. We are now living in an unprecedented time that people within our generation have never experienced before. Be kind to your mind and be ok that things are not ok. Rest assured that this too shall pass. You can do this.

 

 

With love, Shareena 

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