Finding the right mental health therapist can be a challenging part of the journey toward self-discovery, especially when you live in an area with a lot of options available.
Though it’s hard to narrow down your options and make a decision, there are several things you can keep in mind to help make it easier for you to find a therapist.
Consider the following factors during your research.
What Are Your Therapy Goals?
One of the best ways to narrow down your options is to be aware of what you’re hoping to accomplish with therapy.
- Do you need help processing grief?
- Are you hoping to overcome a disorder?
- Has life at home become tense with your family?
Knowing, or having an idea about what type of therapy you need will help you find licensed professionals that practice your desired therapy.
Be as honest and upfront as possible about what you’re looking for in a therapist, as well as what emotions you’re experiencing when you speak to intake specialists.
Is the Therapist Accepting New Patients?
It’s also important to determine whether a therapist you’re thinking about seeing is currently accepting new patients.
Once you determine whether new patients are being scheduled, you’ll want to find out how far out the therapist is booked.
If you find these answers satisfactory, ask whether the mental health therapist accepts your health insurance, or if you plan to pay for your sessions out of pocket, how much a session will cost you.
Does the Therapist Have A Good Reputation?
There are a couple of ways to determine whether a therapist has a good reputation during your research.
If a friend, family member, or co-worker recommends a therapist personally, they likely think highly of the provider and have had positive experiences.
If you have located a selection of therapists on your own, take a look at testimonials and reviews concerning the therapist on third-party websites (like Yelp, Good Therapy, etc.) as well as the office’s website.
While online reviews should not make or break your decision, they’re a wise factor to consider as you work to narrow down your choices to a select few.
Where Is the Therapist Located?
Distance may be something to consider when looking for a licensed therapist, and if you have a busy life, you’re likely thinking, “I need a therapist near me.”
Try to look for mental health therapists who are located in your area or one located near your workplace.
Additionally, if you’re hoping to attend virtual visits, it’s a good idea to find an online therapist or one who offers virtual and in-person visits.
Does the Office Offer Consultations?
Many therapy offices offer free consultations to individuals who are hoping to match with their ideal therapist.
These consultations involve an exchange of information between the consultant and the potential patient.
After a series of questions, the consultant can determine whether a therapist in the office can meet your needs, as well as setting up an initial appointment.
Meeting the therapist at the initial visit can give you a good indication as to whether you’ll be able to form a good therapist/patient relationship with this provider.
Can You See Yourself Trusting the Therapist?
This is the most important factor of all to consider when trying to find a therapist who suits you.
During therapy, you’re going to be discussing some potentially uncomfortable topics and sharing things that you usually keep to yourself.
It’s imperative that you’re able to trust the therapist in order to make the most out of your therapy journey.
- Do you feel welcome in the office?
- Do you feel like the therapist is free from judgment?
- Is the therapist friendly?
You may not be ready to trust the therapist the moment you start your sessions, but it’s important to see the potential for growth.
If the therapist you speak to leaves a good first impression on you and seems to understand your therapy goals, you may want to continue seeing this professional.
Stay in tune with your feelings during therapy sessions.
This way, you can decide after a few sessions whether you would like to continue visiting the therapist.
It’s not uncommon for an individual to go through several sessions with several licensed professionals before finding one they like.
If you find that the first therapist you see is not quite right for you, don’t be discouraged.
Therapy can be a very unique process and while some people find a therapist they enjoy right away, others need to experiment somewhat before finding a professional they can grow with.
If you’d like to seek support for your therapy needs, including finding the right therapist, you’re welcome to contact our offices as soon as you’re ready. We’ve helped many people struggling with their therapy options, and we would be honored to help you, too.
Please feel free to book a complimentary 20-minute consultation with one of our licensed therapists if you know who you would like to work with, or you can book a consult call with our center’s clinical intake coordinator who will match you to the best-fitting therapist for your clinical and logistical needs.