Psychotherapy is a process where a professionally trained therapist or counselor provides “treatment” for the client (sometimes called “patient”).  Treatment can include many things (see below), but above all, it should be helpful to you personally.  You, as the client, can use your intuition and “gut-feelings” to decide if a therapist is right for you.

The treatment should include things like: being a good listener for you, helping you deal with your feelings and/or thoughts, helping you set or achieve goals you might have, and helping you develop or handle your relationships.

YOU should be the one in charge of your therapy.  You are the one to decide what you would like to work on, and how fast you want to proceed with it.  Therapy is often a challenge, but it should always feel safe.  If you ever feel uncomfortable in therapy, it is right for you mention it to your therapist.

If you are considering psychotherapy, or psychological counseling, you may have some questions, reservations, or fears about the process.  This is normal.  Just about everyone has some anxiety about beginning therapy, especially if they have never participated in it before.  You may be wondering, “What will I say?  How does it work? What will my therapist do?  What will my therapist say?”  Again, this is very normal.  Usually, these initial fears subside once therapy begins, especially if you and your therapist are a good fit.  Try to be brave and ask all the questions you are thinking!

Submitted by Dana Howley, MA, TLLP of Wentworth and Associates PC in Utica, MI. Dana can be reached by email at

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