Shot of a businesswoman looking overwhelmed in a demanding office environment. Why is therapy important? It helps to unburden my mind.

Why Is Therapy Important?

In Africa, people with mental health problems tend to ignore the signs or blatantly refuse to seek therapy. They think, “I’m doing just fine,” or “why is therapy important anyway?” This is mostly because of the stigmas associated with mental health in Africa, like:

  • the belief that only mad people go to therapy
  • therapy is too expensive; it’s only for wealthy (and mad) people
  • asking for help means you’re weak and useless
  • Africans are “too strong” to have mental disorders
  • you’re only depressed because you’re poor or hungry

However, every human has mental health, which is essential for a healthy and stable life. And when mental well-being is threatened in any way, therapy is a viable option to explore. What is therapy, really? Why is therapy important? Stick around!

What is Therapy?

Therapy is a treatment for psychological, mental, or emotional problems in which a therapist works with a client to understand issues and find ways to fix them. 

A therapist is a certified mental health professional who specialises in helping people to recognise and reduce symptoms of mental illness, develop better emotional and cognitive skills, and cope with life challenges.

Therapy isn’t only for people diagnosed with mental health conditions. People go to therapy for all sorts of reasons, like:

  • to resolve conflicts
  • to discuss and understand their emotions
  • to figure out why they act the way they do
  • to have a safe space to bare their mind to a stranger without being judged
  • to heal from trauma
  • to figure out stressors or triggers
  • to address mental health conditions
  • to improve their interpersonal skills

So, therapy is a valuable choice to consider if you’re struggling or need someone to talk to and figure out a way forward. First, figure out your needs, what you want out of therapy, what type of therapy suits you best, and find the right therapist for you.

Happy Black Spouses Thankful To Family Counselor After Successful Marital Therapy Session, Shaking Hands With Psychotherapist, Grateful For Reconciliation, Sitting On Couch At Office, Free Space

Types of Therapy

There are numerous types of therapy, each of which has a unique approach to addressing mental health conditions. Types of therapy include:

  • Psychodynamic therapy: This is an approach to therapy that focuses on emotions and thoughts.
  • Behavioural therapy: This therapeutic approach focuses on self-destructive and unhealthy behavioural traits.
  • Cognitive therapy: Cognitive therapy deals with thought patterns.
  • Interpersonal therapy: This type of therapy addresses interpersonal relationship issues.
  • Humanistic therapy: Humanistic therapy stresses the unique view of the individual.

Why is Therapy Important?

Regardless of age, sex, gender, or social standing, no human is immune to mental health issues or unpleasant life experiences. And that’s where therapy comes in — helping people to foster their natural coping skills.

However, many people question the usefulness of therapy because they believe medication, sleeping a little more, or talking to their friends would change everything. Well, all of these are temporary solutions to what is sometimes a lasting issue.

Intrigued but unconvinced? Here are some reasons therapy is necessary. 

Therapy helps to build good communication skills

Therapy is a safe space to express yourself without restraints or fear of judgement. For it to work, both parties (the therapist and the client) have to be willing to communicate openly. Therapy encourages unhinged vulnerability and promises discretion, objective feedback, and no judgement. It’ll also help you to understand, identify, and learn to project your needs or emotions healthily.

Therapy improves mental functions

Therapy is like a gym for the mind. It encourages open communication, which helps to unburden, relax, sharpen, and strengthen the mind. 

shot of two women performing a yoga technique

Therapy boosts physical well-being

The mind is the control room of the body. The body will begin to crack under pressure if mental processes are strained. And since therapy improves mental well-being, the physical body will reflect the same improvement.

Therapy helps to manage symptoms of psychological conditions

In cases of psychological issues like anxiety, depression, and extreme stress, therapy helps you to understand what you’re experiencing and how to cope better.

Therapy encourages emotional regulation

Talking to a therapist can help you to understand your emotions and how to handle them better.

Therapy improves interpersonal relationships

Every relationship is bound to experience conflict, one way or another. However, prolonged conflicts can affect the stability of any relationship. Therapy allows all parties involved to express themselves without restraints or fear of judgement and, in the end, help them to reach a favourable resolution.

black couple arguing in family therapy with counselor

Therapy improves productivity

A sharper mind is more productive than one that is muddled up. Everyday events take their toll on the mind, accumulating over time and eventually causing the body to slow down. Therapy helps to unburden the mind and improves focus and concentration, which are essential for productivity.

Therapy promises discretion

 Professional ethics require therapists to be confidential. In other words, what happens with your therapist stays with your therapist. They do not disclose your personal information to anyone. You also are not obligated to tell anyone that you are in therapy if you do not feel comfortable with it. You can express yourself as freely as you please. There’s no room for judgement, and, fear not, your secrets are safe with your therapist.

Therapy reduces psychological stress

Extreme psychological stress can cause burnout and have adverse effects on mental health. With the aid of a therapist, you can unburden your mind, figure out stress factors, and find effective ways to manage stress. 

Therapy addresses mental health conditions

Therapy is usually the first recourse for any mental health condition. It suppresses and, where possible, eliminates such conditions, giving you a shot at a normal, stable life.

close-up of smiling woman reclining in a chair.

Takeaway

Therapy is designed to uplift mental, psychological, and emotional stability. The duration of therapy differs from one person to another, but the final result stays the same – a positive impact on well-being. If you need help finding a therapist, we’re readily available to connect you with licensed mental health professionals. Don’t hesitate to reach out to us.

About the Author(s)

Oluwafikunayomi is a content writer and proofreader who (loves and) reads French Language at the University of Lagos. When she is not writing or reading, she drags John Grisham and Stephen King in her book club, Elysium.

6 thoughts on “Why Is Therapy Important?”

  1. I’ve been a victim of stigma because I asked for therapy but I got over it. I’m also getting to know the types of therapy from you.

    This is amazing!

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