Finding the Right Therapist

Finding the right therapist is a difficult and daunting task. A strong predictor of a positive and successful outcome is the relationship you have with your therapist. That is why it is important to find a therapist who is a good fit for you. You are making the effort and investing in yourself, and you deserve to feel seen, heard, and respected.

I have outlined some things that are important as you begin your search and things to consider.

  1. Use the FREE consultation: First impressions make a difference. Many psychotherapists offer low-cost or free consultations so that you can ask any questions that might be important to you. You can also use this time to have a better understanding of the therapist’s approach, demeanor, and ways of working. Make sure to have a list of your questions that are most important to ask.
  • Ask for what you need: If you have experienced therapy before, you will know what made you comfortable and what didn’t. Share this with your therapist before beginning. It could change their approach and ways of working. This way they can lean in on things that have worked in the past. Even if you haven’t experienced therapy before, you know yourself better than anyone and you can be truthful about what you are looking for. A place to just vent? A person to help you set goals. Therapists will gather this information after speaking with you a few times, however if you are aware of it, let them know.
  • Ask trusted people: Therapists are not allowed to have ratings and reviews on their websites, to ensure confidentiality of their clients, so often it can be difficult to assess whether you want to move forward. Ask trusted people for referrals if you would like. Consult people you may trust because they will likely know someone who has had a good experience. If you have therapist friends, they can’t treat you, but they have a wide network of other therapists that they can refer you to.
  • Your comfort & convenience comes first: You are paying for a service, and you should be able to find one that accommodates your schedule. Often therapists have set hours and that is fine, however ensure that their hours are a match for when it’s convenient for you. Also think about the format of the session. Some therapists offer in-person and some only virtual. If you are looking for private session outside of the home, then don’t settle for someone who is only virtual. Alternatively, if you are extremely busy and find it difficult to go in person, ensure that the therapist you choose has a virtual option. Some therapists have hybrid as well.
  • Do your research: There are several modalities out there that can be incredibly helpful. Your therapist will determine how to move forward based on your concerns, however it is important for this to be collaborative process between you and your therapist. If you have done some research and want to ask questions about specific modalities, you should feel comfortable asking your therapist about it. Cognitive Behaviour Therapy, Dialectical Behaviour Therapy, Solution Focused Therapy, Emotionally Focused Therapy are all commonly used approaches.