Before counselling

Before you begin seeing your counsellor there’s some questions it’s worth asking yourself...

Is talking therapy the right choice for me now?
Am I ready to explore my feelings and behaviour?
Do I feel able to open up about things that are very personal or hard to talk about?

Is there anything else I need to get help with first?
For example, housing, medical or financial issues.
Before engaging with the emotional parts of counselling are you in a place in your life where you can do that?
These questions can be explored with a counsellor but it’s useful to consider what order you need things to happen in.

What do I want to achieve from therapy?
It can help to set some goals which you feel are achievable. Discuss this with your therapist so you can both aim to reach a shared goal.

Is this the right type of therapy for me?
Ask your therapist what kind of therapy they offer and how they think this can help you. If they use terms you don’t understand, ask them to explain.

What do I need to make the room feel comfortable and safe?
For example, you could think about where you sit, the lighting or the temperature.
What do you need to feel more relaxed? It’s okay to express your needs in a counselling relationship.

Do I want to take something in with you to help you ground yourself?
For example, a treasured item or something you can fiddle with.
Sometimes it’s useful to have something to bring us back down to the ground if a session feels too intense or you have to go back to your daily routine afterwards.

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