The words 'therapy' and 'counselling' (the same with 'therapists' and 'counsellors') are often used interchangeably here in Australia, but they both refer to talking to someone who is trained to help you deal with difficult thoughts, feelings and behaviours. They will work with you to explore your inner dialogue and emotions that ultimately dictate your actions and behaviours. Once they help you to better understand what might be causing your difficulties they will work with you to put strategies in place to overcome them.
Should I go to therapy?
The fact that you are on this page, reading this sentence is probably a good sign that you should try therapy.
In Australia there has been a stigma for people to think that there is something 'wrong' with people who go to therapy, but the truth is that all of us have issues that we need to work through, and talking with a trained professional is no different than working with a personal trainer to get you in physical shape.
To talk with a therapist to see how they may help you, you can book a free 15 minute session with any of the therapists of your choosing.
Will I be able to afford therapy?
The cost of therapy varies greatly between therapists, due to factors such as qualifications and experience. This means that there is an opportunity for even those on a tight budget to connect with a low cost therapist.
It's also worth looking at your private health insurance to see if 'mental health services' is covered by your policy, as this can be a great way to get a rebate.
If you have been referred to a mental health practitioner by a GP, then you may also be eligible for a Medicare rebate.
What is a counselling session like?
A good counselling session will feel like an enormous relief, as you finally get to talk to someone about those issues that you had internalised for so long.
In the first session your counsellor will talk to you about what you want from counselling and agree on some objectives together. Then in the following sessions you'll work together towards achieving those objectives and focus on the areas you want to work on.