Many people have the wrong idea about therapy. They think that only people who have gone mad (or are going mad) need therapy, but that’s not true. Everyone needs therapy! Therapy is like exercise for your mind, and therapists are the gym instructors.
A therapist can help you understand your feelings, thoughts, and actions and how they affect your life. By doing so, they help you gain a sense of clarity. What are the signs to look out for to know that you need a therapist? Let’s dig in!
Who is a Therapist?
A therapist is a licensed medical professional who is trained to evaluate, diagnose, rehabilitate, or treat people with mental, emotional, and behavioral issues. The term is often associated with psychologists, but anyone who helps to rehabilitate a sick person (e.g. psychoanalysts, counselors, life coaches, and social workers) can be called a therapist.
Some common issues addressed by a therapist or psychologist include depression, anxiety disorders, Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), eating disorders, substance management, stress management, career and relationship issues, and anger management issues.
What Does a Therapist Do?
The primary assignment of a therapist is to rehabilitate or tend to people with mental, emotional, or behavioral issues. But, there are other ways that you might benefit from seeing a therapist, like:
- Sharing your fears and worries with a neutral person
- Feeling heard, understood, and supported
- Getting insight into past experiences and why you do certain things
- Seeing your thoughts and actions from a different point of view
- Getting more self-aware
- Learning healthier ways to cope with stress
- Gaining clarity of self and purpose
- Improving your interaction with other people
- Inculcating healthy habits
- Improving the overall quality of your life
Signs You Need To See A Therapist
Contrary to popular belief, you don’t need a medical diagnosis to see a therapist. Also, seeing a therapist doesn’t mean you’re going mad or need to be confined to an asylum. Here are signs you need to see a therapist:
- You’re overwhelmed with tasks
- You’re not getting enough sleep
- You experience changes in your eating habit
- You need someone to speak to
- You experienced trauma
- You’re suddenly tired of the things you once loved
- You’re experiencing difficulties in your relationship
You’re overwhelmed with tasks
Adulthood is hard already. Adding that to other responsibilities like a job, children, a relationship, school, et cetera, can get overwhelming. All that stress can lead to extreme fatigue or burnout — and that’s where a therapist comes in. A therapist can help you examine your workload, determine stressors, and figure out healthy ways to manage your time and deal with stress effectively.
You’re not getting enough sleep
Sleep is a vital factor for good health. Quality sleep helps the brain relax and function properly. It also refreshes the body and helps the mind stay focused. Hence, not getting enough sleep can threaten your physical and mental health.
You may experience signs like mood swings, “sudden” sadness, fatigue, difficulty remembering things, inability to concentrate on tasks, or headaches. When you see a therapist, they can help you identify the root cause of your insomnia and give you helpful tips to help you sleep better.
You experience changes in your eating habit
A change in eating habits is a common symptom of numerous health conditions, like anorexia, depression, and ADHD (attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder). When you notice this, you can consult a therapist to pinpoint the cause of the change in your nutrition levels. They can also help you with valuable pointers towards adopting a healthy eating habit.
You need someone to speak to
Clearing your head from time to time is necessary. Sometimes, you may feel like no one “sees,” understands, or listens to you. Other times, you may just need someone to talk to and unburden your mind. A therapist is your go-to person!
Therapists are trained to be unbiased, objective, and good listeners. They’re ready to listen to you and help with possible solutions to whatever issues you might have. Keeping all those thoughts and feelings bottled up can put your mental health at risk, in any case, so it’s better to talk to someone who’s trained to listen to you.
You experienced trauma
Trauma is also one of the signs you need to see a therapist. Trauma is a natural response our mind gives to a terrible event, like the death of a loved one, sexual assault, losing a relationship, war, losing a job, getting involved in an accident, getting kidnapped, et cetera.
Dealing with trauma can be daunting. The unpleasant event can keep recurring in your mind until it begins to interfere with your daily activities and productivity. Ultimately, it can affect your mental health and result in PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder, depression, or anxiety disorders.
Overcoming trauma is not a walk in the park. You need the help and expertise of a therapist to help you process your emotions, understand what you’re experiencing, identify triggers, and get closure.
You’re “suddenly” tired of the things you once loved
The medical name for losing interest in things you once found pleasurable is Anhedonia. This sudden feeling of apathy is something to look out for because it can be a sign of extreme stress or mental health conditions like depression. You need to see a therapist to ascertain what the problem is and how to deal with it.
You’re unusually irritable, and your mood swings are getting frequent
If you’re unusually cranky or getting annoyed by family, friends, or colleagues over insignificant things, or you notice that you seem to feel “blue” or down more often than before, those may be signs you need to see a therapist. Going for therapy would help you to understand your stressors and figure out healthy ways to cope with stress.
You’re experiencing difficulties in your relationship
If you’re dealing with a specific issue causing a fight or strain in your relationship, speaking to a relationship counselor would help provide objective mediation and improve interpersonal communication between you and your partner.
Everyone needs therapy — even therapists. If you notice or experience any of the signs above, don’t overlook them. You can always reach out to us to book a mental health check-up or therapy session. Here at mytherapist.ng, your mental health is our priority! We are always available to answer your questions and provide all the resources and support you need.