- The problem of thinking my problems are unsolvable. Before I began therapy, I truly felt like Mia Thermopolis in The Princess Diaries: “as always, this is as good as it’s gonna get.” No matter how much I progressed in various areas of my life, I felt like certain things were doomed to be a challenge forever. I feel such relief in knowing that no, actually, problems are meant to be solved, and therapy is showing me healthy ways to solve my own problems.
- The problem of my issues repeating themselves, over and over again. Before I began therapy, I kept seeing myself repeat the same unhealthy patterns. Different people, different circusmtances, same unhealthy behavior. I knew it was a repetitive issue, but I didn’t know how to stop or where it was coming from. Now in therapy, I’m getting to do the (very uncomfortable) work of unraveling what it is inside me that keeps creating the same bad situations. It will take time, but I feel so much more hopeful now about life.
- The problem of feeling like I have to face my issues alone. Before I started therapy, no matter how much I journaled or talked to loved ones about my deepest fears and anxieties, the issues were still there afterward. Don’t get me wrong, therapy hasn’t magically erased them, but knowing that a professional is willing to help guide me to my own inner truth, makes me feel supported in a way I haven’t felt before.
- The problem of feeling like a burden to my friends. Before I started therapy, I confused friendship with therapy sessions. They definitely overlap, but now that I have a professional therapist on my team, I can enjoy the brighter side of life with friends, because I don’t depend solely on them to help me work out my issues. While my friends are certainly a huge support in my life, I feel so grateful that I can simply laugh and chat about TV or silly things, as well as talk about hard things. I’m learning that friendship can be light-hearted and joyful, and doesn’t have to be the only outlet for my harder feelings.
- The problem of feeling stagnant in my personal growth. Before therapy, I felt like a doctor working on their own body. I knew I wasn’t getting the job done properly, because I didn’t have enough perspective to make an accurate observation. Now I get to allow another person, a licensed professional, to simply observe and let me know what it is they see. This simple act has shown me where I can progress, and where I am holding myself back without even knowing it.
- The problem of avoiding the answers waiting in my own heart. Before therapy, I knew that the answers lie within me. But I didn’t know how to access them. I didn’t know the right questions to ask, or how to ask myself those questions. Now, I have someone who can objectively remind me of my own hopes and dreams, and ask me specific questions that unlock the answers hidden within.
I think I was scared to start therapy because I know that things get messier before they get better. It’s like when you deep-clean your apartment: the house looks like it was hit by the Tasmanian devil before it starts looking tidier. I knew I would have to un-earth some things that I had been sweeping under the rug for a very long time, and that my life would turn upside down for a while. It still is upside-down, to be honest. I don’t know – maybe life is just a sequence of various upside-downs. But I do know that with each exploration into the darkest parts of my heart, I shine the light of conscious awareness on my life, and my days become a bit brighter.
Have you considered going to therapy? Do you know what you’re scared of talking about? How would your life change if you focused your attention on the very things you’re avoiding?
Thanks for reading,