There are so many books and articles about therapy on the market. Which ones do you recommend to your clients? Every therapist faces the challenge of establishing a trusting relationship with new clients and keeping them coming back. Often clients who are new to therapy quit after a few sessions. Why? People sometimes give up because they are anxious, and unclear about the process they are starting – it feels too vague, uncharted and directionless. They don’t know how it works, or if it will work at all. This accompanying guide will help them to continue.
New clients can also be taken by surprise by the intensity or speed of emerging feelings. Strong emotions can threaten and overwhelm their defenses. Although an important part of our task as therapists is to uncover feelings, without giving clients a structure for understanding what is occurring, and why, they may feel ashamed, vulnerable and frightened.
Someone To Talk To gives your new clients an overview of what they will experience. It explains why expressing feelings is important, even if painful. It shows them that the therapy process has a beginning, middle and end. It addresses the concerns and questions they often have, but rarely express – such as, “If I start crying I’ll never stop!” or “I’m afraid of how angry I’ll get.” or “Why do I have to bring up the past?”
As you know, building trust is vital to good therapy. Someone To Talk To explains the very personal relationship between therapist and client, acknowledges the difficulty of opening up to a “stranger” with details of one’s life – details which sometimes are shared with no one else. The client is commended for the courage to be vulnerable, encouraged to continue, and reassured that the effort and commitment will be transformative and worthwhile.