My Therapeutic Journey By: April McLain

Ten years. Three therapists. One continuous journey.

Finding the right therapist is absolutely crucial to you moving forward in growth, and out of the places holding you back. By having three different therapists in a ten year span I learned that you need different individuals for different seasons. I had one therapist in high school, one in my early twenties, and my most recent in my mid twenties. Each served a unique and specific purpose in moving towards my lifelong goals.

Here are the best tips I’ve learned along my therapeutic journey so far:

1. Find the right therapist for your season

Stick with the individual you can relate to, and the one who has experience in the area you need breakthrough. For me it was: divorce, codependency, depression, anxiety, disordered eating. They were all apart of my journey, some more pressing in certain seasons.

2. Reconcile that your therapist is not your friend

Your therapist is a part of the catalyst to move you forward into deeper healing. This will not always look like cheering you on. Sometimes it will look like saying the things you don’t want to hear (usually the gems that move us forward). Be ready to work + be ready to get uncomfortable. 

3. Speak to the stigma

Unleash yourself from the lie that you don’t need therapy and that you are weak for needing help. We *all* need therapy. Be willing to live your therapeutic journey without the lens of shame.

A lens without stigma looks like a life without a therapeutic time-line. No end date, no expiration on your healing, attuned to your needs — accepting of your own personal journey. 

I remember yearning for a time that I wouldn’t desperately need therapy to be a part of my story. I remember the fragile places of my heart longing to have a “normal” life without help. 

I was believing a deep seeded lie that my worth was marked by picture perfect independence. 

Along the way I’ve learned this: therapy is one of my many tools – being open to going to therapy at any point in time is imperative to my health. The therapeutic journey is not linear. Get rid of the arrival mentality that can easily accompany the shame that presents itself when we step into unchartered territory. Therapy is a beautiful tool on the journey to living your very best and most free life. 

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