What Should I Expect?
Starting therapy may seem daunting or overwhelming. It can be uncomfortable talking to a stranger about intimate details you barely share with your closest friends. It may also feel like a risk to invest time, energy, and resources into your own health without guaranteed or tangible results.
However, seeking help and valuing yourself enough to try therapy is acting upon the hope that you can feel better and turn your life around in the ways you want or need. It takes courage and strength to overcome initial fears that otherwise could hold you back from feeling better and creating lasting positive changes you desire.
To help ease some of your concerns and get you more familiar with therapy, here’s an overview of how to get started and what to expect in your therapy sessions.
Call us (or fill out the contact form here) for a free phone consultation. One of our therapists will ask you some questions about yourself, and answer any questions you may have to help determine if we are a good fit for your needs. If we are, then we will schedule your first session with one of our therapists.
If we aren’t a good fit, no worries. We’ll offer you referrals for other therapists or services that we think might help you. Either way, you’ll leave that call with more knowledge and support than before.
You come to the office for your first session. Have a seat in our comfy living room area and your therapist will come get you at the start of your appointment. If you are able, we ask that you arrive 15 minutes early to your first appointment to fill out some paperwork.
What happens in a therapy session?
During the first session we will go over the paperwork with you, discuss confidentiality, payment, and the cancellation process before asking you some questions to get to know you better, and to gather some initial information. Then we’ll discuss what brings you to therapy and what you would like to see changed as a result of therapy. You will set some initial goals for therapy. Future sessions will be focused on helping you accomplish your goals.
During the first few sessions, your therapist will discover potential areas of strength and improvement, and discuss a "treatment plan" outlining the things you would like to change, for example:
For Pete to follow directions the first time, 75% of the time.
To discuss my feelings with my mother more openly by Christmas.
To yell less when we’re upset with one another and feel like we’re married again within 2 months.
The following sessions will focus upon meeting your goals. We will periodically discuss your progress and decide if we need to add goals, change them, or if you want to be done with therapy. Our goal is for you to come to a place where you don't need us anymore!
The main focus of your sessions will be what’s happening in your life day to day and week to week. Your therapist will ask you questions to help understand your background and world better.
Expect your therapist to ask the deep questions. What is that nagging negative inner voice telling you when you feel your worst? What do you want from life? What do you wish were different right now? Asking questions is how we will get to know each other and get clear on your therapeutic goals, and how you see success.
Expect humor, honesty, and bold truth, as well as compassion, empathy, and respect. We promise our therapists are not scary or judgmental.
It may take some time for you and your therapist to get to know each other and for you to feel more comfortable and relaxed in our sessions. In a few sessions you will get into a familiar rhythm as you enter the session and start talking. This is also why we strongly encourage clients to attend weekly at the beginning of their work. It speeds up the process and helps build momentum toward your goals.
Bring a notebook/journal to your sessions. You will want to take notes and remember what you talked about. Many of our clients will jot down a few items that come up throughout the week and then discuss those items in session. Instead of “oh I wish I had remembered to talk about that in therapy,” write it down, and bring it in. Even if you feel like you have four totally different topics written down, bring it in. There could be an underlying theme that is worth exploring – seeing patterns is part of our job!
Therapy is a team approach.
Therapy is a process that takes time and commitment.
For therapy to have a long-term effect, you will work through the initial difficulties and discomforts to dive deeply into underlying core issues. Starting with presenting problems will be helpful in the short-term. Eventually getting to the heart of the issues will allow you to best understand and release them in lasting, effective ways.
Therapy introduces increased humility and ownership of what hasn’t been working for you by carefully reexamining your beliefs and learned behaviors. You will reflect on childhood memories, past experiences, and moments of trauma to varying degrees that are stored in the mind and body even when we don’t realize it.
Doing this deep work transforms our suffering into empowerment and corrective action. When you are fully aware of your choice and agency in every interaction, you will start to create and live into the life you’ve been waiting for.
A healthy therapeutic relationship makes the difference.
The interactions between client and professional are of utmost importance in therapy being helpful and effective. Making sure it is a good fit for you and the therapist is step one in starting the therapeutic journey.
Respect, a basic expectation in therapy, comes from feeling understood, appreciated, and genuinely heard. In sessions, our therapists are focused and present to your thoughts, feelings, and stories. We value your inherent strengths, solutions, and explorations by providing a nurturing, supportive, and healing experience.
Privacy and trust are of paramount importance to feeling safe during the therapeutic process. Our therapists are bound by HIPAA and ethical codes that require confidentiality and healthy boundaries. We take these issues very seriously, even when receiving referrals from other clients. Rest assured working with Rooted entails full confidentiality, respect, and a safe, trustworthy relationship.
For more information, please call us directly (570-884-4662 ext. 1) to discuss treatment specialized to you and your needs.
What are the Benefits of Therapy?
New found happiness
Freedom from self limiting behaviors and thoughts
Enhanced relationships with your partner, family & friends
Awareness of what is hampering your growth
Development of insight into your strengths
Setting of reasonable & accomplishable goals
Reduced need to self-medicate
Your perspective on people will change
Your perspective on life will change
Long-held secrets can be released once and for all (we’ve heard lots of them)
You’ll know that you are not alone
It will prepare you for future challenges in life.
Passive aggressive behaviors will stop resurfacing because the underlying anger will be processed
Most importantly, the process of psychotherapy (AKA talk therapy) holds and lasts. It puts you in charge and puts to rest old ideas, feelings, and emotions. They are discussed, challenged and processed once and for all.
The “feeling” part is what we as humans often avoid – often at a very high cost. In therapy, you become a better feeler of feelings. Humans don’t like experiencing pain, so we self medicate via drugs, alcohol, sex, food, spending money etc. and in the process hurt ourselves.
In a safe, confidential setting, talk therapy allows you to examine the resistance as it relates to your happiness and ability to transform yourself. If any of these benefits resonate with you, call 570-884-4662 for a free phone consultation.