The value of therapy can seem elusive. Why spend a significant amount of time and money to come and talk?
I am saddened to think about how therapy is misunderstood. I’ve had clients feel guilty for embracing therapy because they were told they were weak for needing such validation. I’ve had clients need to hide their participation in therapy because of the judgment they faced from work, friends, or family. I’ve also had clients become anxious when results don’t come quickly wondering if they are wasting their time, or worse, fearing they simply aren’t fixable.
Therapy is not like many other services, where there is not shame tied to receiving validation, where judgment is suspended, and where positive results have nothing to do with fixing you.
Rather, the results of therapy show up in new lived experience. The results of therapy are often times less tangible in the moment often realized with time and living. It takes patience, and commitment to the process. I remember sessions I had a year ago that are still impacting my lived experience today. When embraced fully therapy opens up new ways of seeing our world and relationships. The revelations made in session find a way of burrowing themselves into our lived experience long after session has ended.
When we pursue therapy we need to be asking ourselves not what is wrong with us or who we have to hide it from, but rather, what kind of lived experience do we want to have. How is our marriage? How are our relationships with our children? Have we sublimated any trauma hoping it will disappear? Is there loss in life or death that haunts us? What keeps us from feeling like we are really living, and how can we find what we desire? Ask yourself, how much all of this is really worth to you.
It’s true, the value of therapy is hard to measure, it’s even harder to justify in a world that struggles to measure its value. That is, until you have seen the work through and experienced a new more satisfying lived experience. It’s not just life to get through…..it is life to live!