How to Know When It’s Time to See a Counseling Therapist

Counseling and Clipboard

Coming to the decision to visit a counseling therapist can certainly be a difficult one. It can take months, and sometimes even years to decide to go to therapy. This is because it takes a significant amount of humility and bravery to get help. However, attending an appointment with a therapist shouldn’t be so intimidating. The therapist you see will welcome you in their office with open arms. But, recognizing the need to see a therapist is sometimes a bit challenging. So, in this blog post, we explain how to know it’s time to see a therapist.

Signs It’s Time to See a Counseling Therapist

There are many signs it’s time to see a therapist and they are different for every patient. So, although you may not match the following signs, you still may be ready to see a therapist. If you aren’t sure, it’s a good idea to talk with a trusted family member or friend about attending counseling. Or, you can always try attending a few counseling appointments to see if they are beneficial. Visiting a counselor won’t hurt, so look for the signs below in yourself and consider attending a session.


Your Quality of Life is Affected

When your quality of life is affected by whatever you are going through, consider visiting a counseling therapist. Mental health issues can have a negative impact on your everyday life. In fact, a decrease in everyday happiness is a very common symptom across most mental health issues. Whether this be a small decrease or a significant one, any decrease is a sign you may be dealing with something serious.

No matter if you have anxiety, depression, or even extreme grief, you may feel you are less happy than you once were. If so, this is a major concern. Happiness is incredibly important, and you deserve to feel this emotion every day. So, if you haven’t felt happy lately and your quality of life is lower than usual, consider attending therapy. Therapy may be what you need to turn your life around for the good, so don’t write it off.

You Can’t Cope On Your Own

If you are struggling to cope with a past situation, you may be ready to see a counseling therapist. Whether you were a part of a traumatic situation, or are grieving the loss of a loved one, coping can be difficult. Relating to others and finding comfort while coping isn’t always easy. However, a therapist can talk with you about your feelings.

Your therapist can discuss healthy coping mechanisms so you can get through your situation. They are also licensed to treat those who are seeking healing from their circumstances. From mood disorders to grieving, a counseling therapist can be a helpful resource. In their office, they will create a comforting environment, so you can comfortably sort through your feelings.

Clipboard and counselingYou Can’t Get Along With Your Family

Do you seem to fight with your family every day? Or, do you feel as though you aren’t loved by them? Both of these are indicators you may benefit from counseling. Constant fighting with family or friends is a sign you may not manage your emotions as well as you could. Or, it may mean your family has some dysfunction, which can take a toll on your stress levels. Either way, both of these are reasons to seek help from a therapist.

If you feel unloved by your family, this may mean you have self-esteem issues. This is very normal, and is treatable through counseling. On the other hand, it may be because you’re in an unloving environment. A therapist can help you with both of these concerns. Feeling unloved is a serious problem and can impact your self-esteem over time. So, if you ever feel like this, even occasionally, it is best to see a therapist.

You Just Want to Talk to an Outsider

Sometimes, you just want to talk to a neutral third-party about something. This may be about your boss, or even about your relationship with your spouse. You could just want a safe place to talk about your feelings and vent. Thankfully, counseling therapists are the perfect resource for this. Counselors cannot legally tell anyone about your session, unless you plan to be violent towards yourself or others. This means you can vent about your employer’s policies, or how your friend made you angry.

Even if you don’t have any mental health issues, you can still see a counselor. There is a common misbelief that you must have a diagnosable mental disorder to attend therapy. However, this couldn’t be further from the truth. Anyone can visit a therapist, no matter the reason behind the appointment. So, if you think you’ll like therapy, don’t be afraid to attend. And, if you need a counseling therapist in the Pace, Milton or Pensacola area, feel free to contact us. We would enjoy the opportunity to meet you, and see about helping you get through whatever you’re dealing with or want to talk about.

How Emotional Counseling is Different From Other Counseling Methods

Emotional counseling session

There are many different counseling methods that psychologists, doctors, and counselors use today. Many patients require specific treatment to heal mentally or emotionally. Thanks to these different treatments, patients can get the specialized sessions they need. One of the forms of counseling is emotional counseling, sometimes call emotionally focused therapy. There are many types of emotionally focused therapy (EFT) that exist for different patient needs. In this blog post, we explain what emotional counseling is, when it’s used, and the different phases of emotional counseling.

What is Emotional Counseling?

Emotional counseling is a treatment method for patients who need help healing emotionally. Unfortunately, many people experience emotional trauma throughout their life. When someone suffers from emotional trauma, it is very difficult to heal. Emotional trauma, just like physical trauma, can leave deep scars for a lifetime. However, you can heal from both emotional and physical trauma with the help of a professional. When it comes to emotional trauma, emotional counseling is the best way to healthily recover. There are many forms of emotional counseling, and some will be more effective than others depending on their trauma and the patient’s preferences.

When is Emotional Counseling Used?

Emotional counseling is typically used when someone cannot get past a negative situation. Other methods of therapy are beneficial for talking through feelings and current situations. Standard counseling sessions are helpful for creating new habits and coping with mood disorders. However, emotional counseling is best for healing from past trauma. This trauma could be:

  • Childhood emotional abuse or neglect
  • Emotionally abusive relationships
  • Improper coping from emotional hardships
  • Attachment or bonding issues
  • No sense of belonging or deep emotions
  • Emotional intimacy issues
  • Abandonment or betrayal

There may be more reasons a counselor or doctor recommends doing emotionally focused therapy. Additionally, some counselors will recommend doing emotional counseling with your significant other. At the end of the day, a patient will benefit from emotionally focused therapy if they have any emotional issues. EFT is a great way to help patients learn to process their emotions and allow themselves to feel again. Additionally, EFT is usually very short, lasting as little as eight sessions. So, it is effective in helping people heal quickly.

Phases in Emotionally Focused Therapy

There are three phases with emotionally focused therapy. These phases can vary in length of time, depending on the patient’s progress. So, your particular situation may require more or fewer counseling sessions than other patients. But, the three phases many patients go through in their emotional counseling treatment are:

Taking notes from counseling meeting

1. Assess and Deescalate Phase

In the first phase, the counselor or therapist will help the patient uncover their underlying emotional trauma. This is to identify the root cause of the emotional issues that brought the patient in for treatment in the first place. The counselor will also help the patient see how their emotional trauma affects their problem solving and everyday behavior. This is to help deescalate the effects of the emotional trauma.

2. Change Events Phase

Once the patient and counselor assess what caused the emotional trauma, and how it changes their behaviors, it’s time to change those behaviors. The counselor and patient work together to create new habits and change the patient’s reactions. They learn how to regulate their behaviors rather than reacting emotionally. This helps them effectively cope with emotional situations and stress.

3. Consolidation of Change Phase

Once the patient starts to show improvement in their emotional reactions and processing, they come up with an action plan. Action plans truly depend on the patient and the therapist treating them. It could be journaling how they truly feel about their life, specific situation, relationship, etc. Or, it could be them coming into therapy once a month to check-in. A lot of the plan will depend on the patient’s schedule and progress in therapy. But, the actionable plan will lead the patient to success as they heal from their emotional trauma.

Your therapist may want to add new stages to your emotional therapy plan, or they may want to remove some. Depending on your self-awareness and severity of the trauma, you may see great results after just a few sessions. On the other hand, if you have been dealing with emotional trauma your whole life, it may take up to 20 sessions. EFT shouldn’t be rushed, though. It’s important you take your time in therapy to heal emotionally. Taking your time will have lasting benefits.

If you are ready to start emotionally focused therapy in Pace, Florida, or Northwest Florida in general, contact us today! Our team of doctors would like to help you heal through emotional counseling. We are open and accepting new patients now, so contact us whenever you’re ready.