TRIED THERAPY BEFORE
AND IT DIDN'T WORK?
Read why Clarity Counseling is different.
we don't do journaling out loud
Some forms of therapy can be the equivalent to what we call "journaling out loud" where each session is comprised of whatever you feel like sharing about from your week or your past. While this type of process is important to the counseling process and does occur in some amount each week, this isn't the work of therapy that facilitates healing. In our view, you will feel temporary relief from doing this in the same way that you do when journaling or talking to a friend. In counseling jargon we call this "catharsis."
Many times, the relief that therapy offers just doesn't seem to last. While that is something that does happen (and there's no shame when it does!), our belief is that sometimes this unnecessarily happens when therapists "hold all the secrets" - meaning they don't educate or teach you what they're doing. This results in you not getting to develop the confidence and practice you need to effectively use those skills outside of the support of the therapist. Understandably, this means you end up back in the counseling office when life brings you something more difficult than you feel confident to handle. In truth, the goal of counseling is to finish in months (not years), and (ideally and in most cases) not need to come back.
healing is hard work
Not just because we talk about hard things, but because we have to create new neural pathways (think new brain muscles) and doing this work is the equivalent of taking your brain to the gym. Effective and efficient therapy is hard-but-good and involves figuring out where you're wanting to go with your life or mental health. This means that eventually we transition the focus of the work to determining what we can do differently in the future. Don't worry if that sounds overwhelming! If your main struggle is motivating yourself to do anything at all or the idea of setting goals makes you feel really anxious, then often one of the first goals becomes actually addressing that very issue!
tackle treatment-resistant Symptoms
Many times, we have been successful in helping people who have been to counseling multiple times before and not felt the relief they were looking for - either at all or that didn't last after treatment ended. We describe these folks as having "treatment-resistant" symptoms. Part of how we're able to be effective in these scenarios is by not just focusing on your present symptoms, but instead focusing on the root causes of the symptoms and addressing those. Further, we stay fairly true to research-based practices as they were designed, whereas a common practice in the counseling world is to draw single exercises from multiple different practices or theories in a way that has little research support.
What happens in a counseling session?
This varies, but universally starts with a session request form to get basic information about you and the nature of your reasons for contactin us. From there we will either place you or let you know an estimate of how long you woud have to wait to start.
At the first session we complete a more thorough questionnaire, we orient you to counseling and advise you of all the laws and rights that you have as a recipient of professional counseling. Lastly, we begin the conversation of what brought you to counseling in the first place and ask questions about things that may be relevant to the therapists ability to assist you.
During the first or second session goals are set, and our Clarity session structure is used to keep things organized and focused on your goals. We use various tools to measure whether what we are doing is working, and teach you skills that you need to reach your goals.
When the goals have been reached, either new goals are established or counseling is discontinued at that time - though it can absolutely resume again in the future!
What is a licensed therapist?
A licensed therapist has to have a masters or a doctorate degree. While the exact number varies by license type, all licensed therapists have completed thousands of hours of counseling while meeting weekly with a licensed therapist who helps them learn their craft and master proper legal and ethical practices. During this time, a therapist must work for a licensed therapist or a company and cannot work independently (operate their own business).
What is an Associate/Intern therapist?
There are 2 categories of unlicensed therapists:
Click license search, and you can view if they have ever had any complaints against them, or make a complaint to the licensing board about them.
What are psychometrics and/or what is DASS-21?
Psychometrics means tools that measure states of mind and/or emotions. Some can even be used to formally diagnose mental health conditions, but those are typically administered by a psychologist (psychological testing).
What happens in group counseling?
Group counseling starts similarly to individual counseling. You complete a session request form on our website so we can get some basic history and information. We then meet with you individually for 30-60 minutes to make sure you would benefit from group. Then you would be assigned to a day and time for group.
How do I know if I need counseling?
This is truly a personal decision. I would recommend using our online depression, anxiety, and stress calculator (see link above "Clear Answers" section) to get a generalized sense of where your symptoms fall on the spectrum. However, the real litmus test is whether your symptoms are causing you distress or disrupting your ability to function in major life domains (relationships, family, work, etc).
Can you help with issues that aren't depression or anxiety?
Yes! We also have experience with substance use, relationship issues, and many other challenges. However, our strongest experience and training is in depression and anxiety-related issues. Contact us today.