Feeling nervous about speaking with a counsellor?

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Firstly, let me start by saying hello and welcome to you. When you’re thinking about talking with a health professional about how you feel, you might feel nervous and uncertain. Many people experience this anxiety because they might not know what to expect, feel vulnerable about sharing personal thoughts and emotions, or worry about being judged. However, seeking help from a counsellor can be a positive and transformative experience, and we want to help you. Here are some tips to help ease your nerves:

  • We are here to help: Registered Counsellors are trained professionals whose goal is to support you, provide guidance, and create a safe space for you to discuss your feelings and concerns.
  • You get to choose what we talk about, and if you want to set goals, we do this together so that you feel supported and empowered.
  • It’s okay to be nervous: Acknowledge that feeling nervous is natural, and it’s all right to experience a range of emotions during the process. Opening up and talking about personal matters can be challenging, but it’s a step toward healing and personal growth.
  • Take your time: You don’t have to share everything in your first session. Take your time to build trust with your counsellor and share at a pace that feels comfortable for you.
  • Write down your thoughts: Before your session, consider writing down any issues you want to discuss or questions you have. This can help you organise your thoughts and help you remember your most important topics.
  • Ask questions: You can ask your counsellor about their approach, what to expect in the sessions, or anything else you want to know. Understanding the process can help calm the nerves.
  • Focus on self-care: Engage in activities that help you relax and reduce stress before your appointment. It can be going for a walk, watching your favourite TV show, listening to music, reading, or any other activity that brings you comfort.
  • Remind yourself of the benefits: Reflect on the positive outcomes that counselling can bring to your life. It’s an opportunity for personal growth, gaining insights, and learning coping strategies to deal with challenges.
  • Be open-minded: Keep an open mind about the counselling process and be willing to try different approaches or techniques that your counsellor suggests.
  • Remember that it’s confidential: Confidentiality is a fundamental aspect of counselling. Knowing that what you share remains private can help you feel more at ease.
  • Give it a chance: Give yourself and the process some time to work and then you will discover your hidden strengths.

It’s great you’re thinking about taking that first step towards seeking support to explore your thoughts, feelings and behaviours with a Counsellor. Learning more about yourself is such an adventure, and can be very beneficial, leading to positive change and greater self-kindness.