I want to engage in therapy, what are the next steps?
Navigating the mental health system can be daunting, especially if you are feeling an immediate need for support.
Here are some tips to begin your search for a therapist:
-Ask your friends or the humans around you.
Some of the people you know might be working with a therapist and if they have talked about it, you could ask how they found their therapist, what their experience is with therapy and if they would they mind sharing the name of their therapist or the therapy practice.
-Check out Psychology Today for your location and preferences.
This is a good way to see the therapists near you, read a bit about their approach and reach out if you'd like to know more. Many therapists offer a free consultation so it's worth it to reach out to several and set up consultations.
-Check your insurance carrier website for available therapists in network.
If your insurance provides mental health benefits this is a good resource. Once you find a few names, you can check Psychology Today or their website to learn more.
-Look around where you live or work.
(I mean this literally.)
Old school version: There are more than a dozen therapy offices near where I live. I know for some this may not be the case but look for options during your commute, while walking or near places you frequent.
Modern version: Google
-Research on-line therapy resources.
These have gained popularity with ease of use and the focus on mental and emotional health since the pandemic. There are several to choose from and each offer therapist's licensed in your state and their profile will give you some idea the services they provide.
-Need a lower cost option or don't have insurance coverage?
Check out Open Path Collective.
This is a great opportunity for those who qualify based on financial need. There is a lifetime member joining fee and once you complete the paperwork and are approved there are many therapists to choose from.
All of this being said, know this: You will likely have a waiting period before you can begin therapy and you might need to contact a number of therapists before finding one that you want to work with.
Most of the time when people reach out to me, they have been thinking about it for a while, have reached the tipping point and are ready to start asap. If you have been considering finding a therapist, go ahead and start the process. At least have a few conversations with therapists to begin develop your understanding of what you might find beneficial and how long the wait might be to see someone.