I've always hated the stigmas that words like "therapy" or "psychiatrist," have carried. I have generalized anxiety as well as social anxiety, and I've dealt with these on my own for my entire life. But recently, I made the decision to start going to cognitive behavioral therapy. For the first few sessions, I was scared, skeptical, and uneasy about the entire thing - but after sticking with it for a few months, I'm forever grateful I decided to go in the first place. I already notice changes within myself, and my way of thinking. I now have tools I'm able to carry with me that can help guide me through even the darkest of days.
One thing people need to realize is that admitting you may need to go to therapy DOES NOT make you weak, weird, crazy, psychotic, or anything of that nature. In fact, entering into some type of therapy, whether it be group therapy, cognitive, behavioral, psychiatric, etc., only means that you are a very strong and smart individual. Here's why:
1. You're taking the first steps towards bettering yourself.
2. You're willing to put in the effort to see the results you want, and that determination can guide you towards positive changes.
3. You're gaining knowledge and skills that will greatly help you in the long-run. Similar to training your body at the gym - you're now working on training your mind and improving your overall well-being.
4. You're allowing yourself to grow as a person.
5. The more you go to therapy, the more you'll start to make sense of certain things in your life. Certain pieces of your puzzle will come together, and sometimes, just understanding yourself more can help you feel better.
6. You'll start to realize you're not alone in this world. There are others out there experiencing exactly what you are, your feelings are valid and real. You might even learn that there are definitions to some of the ways you feel or think, and as a result, a lot of advice available out there as to how to feel better or work on positive changes.
7. You'll learn a hell of a lot about yourself, and you'll be glad. The more you learn about yourself, the more you're able to understand and cope with certain emotions, thoughts, or behaviors.
8. The more you start to feel better about yourself, you'll notice most relationships in your life will become healthier, you'll feel like you have more control over your moods, you think more clearly, and other things will start falling into place.
9. You're building a foundation for a happier future.
10. You're changing your life for the better.
Now remember, finding the right type of therapy, and then the right connection to a therapist, can possibly take time - but be patient, explore your options, and wait to find that perfect fit. And most importantly, never ever be ashamed to get the help you need and deserve. You're strong and smart for doing so. It is only helping you to manage your thoughts, feelings, or behaviors for the betterment of the rest of your life. It is one of the best decisions you can make for yourself and for your future. Don't be afraid, you got this.