Thursday, 11 September 2014

Combating Mental Health: Counselling & CBT.

Image from Google

I got an amazingly positive response after writing this post a few weeks back about mental health, that I felt I wanted to write a little more about my experience. I feel now I'm in a better place to discuss it a little more and slightly less nervous of the response. 

Today I'd like to discuss a little thing called counselling. After going to my GP early this year I was immediately advised to seek some counselling, along side my medication. I'm sure there are others out there that feel like talking to a stranger is the last thing they want to do, but after a few months I finally bit the bullet. There are options to gain counselling on the NHS but I chose to find a private counselor because I thought this was the right thing for me. It also means I get a choice over when my sessions are and also let me find a counselor that specialised in what I thought I needed.

Around 6 weeks ago I went for my first session and since I've been for three more. I was hugely skeptical about whether it was the right step for me to take but I am so glad I did it. Of course I was very anxious before my first session and didn't sleep much the night before, but once I arrived I quickly settle. I am surprisingly open with my counselor and feel like talking to a stranger really helps. The fact that she knows nothing about my life other than what I tell her, makes me feel a little less vulnerable.

My lovely counselor also incorporates cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) into sessions which is all about changing the way we think. This has been the biggest thing for me and I would without a doubt recommend it to anyone that needs a little help. I've been given homework weekly that generally is all about my thinking patterns and turning negative thoughts into more positive ones. The few exercises I've been given really keep me focused until my next session and over the weeks I've noticed that I'm doing it without thinking. 

I've only made small changes but I can feel that the more I change my thinking the more positive I feel about life. I know I can't change a habit of a lifetime overnight but I'm certainly becoming a more positive and less anxious person as a result. My counselor actually said this week 'who are you, and what have you done with Katie?' after I'd achieved a lot of goals from the previous week.

I hope this is a little helpful for anyone questioning whether to go for counselling. I won't promise that it's easy but I do promise it will be worth it.

Katie xx


6 comments:

  1. I'm currently having CBT and i'm not getting much help from it i'm afraid ! glad it's working for you thought xx

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  2. I'm starting CBT soon and really looking forward to it. I don't have anxiety so severely that it effects me all the time but the occasions I do have anxiety attacks are horribly unpleasant so I have high hopes that this can help me get through those situations
    Megan x
    London Callings

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  3. This is so reassuring to read I'm glad you posted :') I'm starting counselling in a couple of weeks for depression and anxiety and am pretty nervous about it! Hope it works for me too :) xxx

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  4. Glad it is working out for you babe :) We must sort out this get together!

    Anoushka
    http://www.Anoushkaloves.com

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  5. I had CBT for around two months a few years ago for my panic disorder. It really helps thinking about things in a different way. Hope it helps you hun!

    Lauren xx

    bylaurenjane

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  6. I read your posts but never build up the courage to post a comment, but I just wanted to say well done for doing so well with something that can be so debilitating :) It's great to hear that you're having the help you need. It's also great of you to post it on here so people in similar circumstances can identify with you. I'm starting group therapy in a few weeks which is really daunting and i'm not sure if it will help as much as individual counselling but every little helps.

    Keep going - you should be so proud of yourself :)

    Jo xx

    She Wears Burgundy

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