So you’ve done your homework, signed up with a therapist and/or psychiatrist, and have begun receiving therapy. How do you know you and your therapist are a good fit? How do you know you are getting the treatment that you need? How do you know if it is helping you? Four simple ways to tell if your therapy is working are:
- You feel better. Whether it’s a thorough cleaning out your mental attic of all the rotten thoughts that have been hurtling around in there for years or simply a single step that you and your therapist have agreed you need to take to aid in your recovery, your therapy should ultimately make you feel better, not worse.
- You believe you can trust your therapist and/or doctor. You don’t want someone who will discuss your problems with her casual acquaintances or with total strangers if the whim hits him. You want someone who respects your confidence and who will handle your information in accordance with the laws and ethics governing the profession.
- You know you can partner with your treatment team in whatever happens in your course of treatment. Are they responsive if you are in crisis? Are you able to reach them when you need them? Do they take any concerns you have about their methods seriously and make changes when needed?
- And finally, you can see progress in your recovery. Whether it’s a function of steps you are taking in therapy or the effects of medications, you can see your way through the turmoil your life has been in. You can take what your therapist or doctor tells you and apply it to your life and see results that positively affect your mental health.
Julie Whitehead currently writes and blogs from Mississippi at her personal blog. She has been a university lecturer, a disability examiner, and a freelance writer. She carries a diagnosis of bipolar disorder and blogs to create awareness and help others understand the disease and its effects.