How To Find A Great Therapist
In this video, I walk you through the steps for finding and interviewing the right therapist for you.
FULL TRANSCRIPT: HOW TO FIND A GREAT THERAPIST - TIPS AND QUESTIONS TO ASK A THERAPIST BEFORE HIRING
Are you trying to figure out how to find a great therapist? If so hang tight, I've got some resources for you coming right up.
Hey there folks! I'm Patrick King, financial planner and host of Transformative Television. If you're new to us, here on this channel we help people who are going through the divorce process, who are dealing with the loss of a spouse or a loved one, or just plain trying to transform their lives for the better. If this is you, please consider subscribing for more content. And if you need financial planning help through any of these phases of life, give me a call. I'm happy to talk with you
But in this video, what I want to help you with is to figure out how to find a great therapist. If you're going through one of these phases in life, getting help from a professional can be invaluable. Also, in the show notes, check it out! I've got a link to all of the checklist below. You can download it and help you in your search for a great therapist. Let's get started.
First off, I want to say thank you to Alyson Lanier, my friend and therapist who helped me put this list together. Check out her website. It's in the show notes. Thank you so much, Alyson, for everything you've helped me with.
WHERE TO LOOK FOR A THERAPIST
All right, the first resource I would mention in searching for therapist is Psychology Today. You can search through your local area, search by geography. Look through all those. Judge kind of how you feel about these folks. Are they professional or not? Are they speaking your language? You know, if their photo is like them catching a delicious bass out on a bass boat, [they're] probably not the kind of professional you're looking for... unless you just really dig fishing. So there's that!
Another one would be FindaTherapist.com. Similar online search and then I would also add, do a local search using Google or Bing or DuckDuckGo whatever your search engine is. See if that gives you some different results you'll probably start seeing some of the same folks again. You know, similar to searching for an attorney, seeing the same folks on these search sites. And then you can start narrowing your list from there.
I would recommend getting word of mouth recommendations. You know, a lot of therapists and counselors do work a little bit under the radar. They might have low key practices. And especially if you know someone in your network that's gone through maybe a divorce or grieving process or life change and they've come out on the other side in such a positive way, that would be someone I recommend talking to.
So last but not least, there are virtual therapists these days. So you can get - you can establish an online relationship virtually with a therapist that works for your time, works for your schedule. There are several different resources out there. Check the show notes and that might be an option for you as well. So there you go!
QUESTIONS TO ASK A THERAPIST BEFORE HIRING
All right, now you've got your list of folks and you're ready to start calling them. Ask for a free consultation. This way, you get to get an idea for what it's like to be with that person face to face, what kind of rapport that you're gonna have when you deal with this person. You know, it can get intense in these types of situations. So I recommend getting that meeting. Whether it's face-to-face, in their office, virtually over, you know, Skype or whatnot, even by phone. And be suspicious of someone - well maybe not suspicious – be cautious with someone who isn't going to be willing to meet with you on a consultation basis. Maybe move them to the bottom of the list. You want to get a feel for what it's like to work with them. So ask for a free consultation.
All right, so you've got your list of potential therapists out there. How the heck do you know if they're right for you or not? Well, check the show notes, download the questions that I've got here to help you go through and judge and see if they're right for you or not.
The first question is a question you need to ask yourself: Are you ready to change? If you're not willing to change, if there's something in your gut that says, hey, I'm not quite ready for this process, that's your answer. You need to postpone the search until you're ready to do the work - ready to go to those places and make those changes. That's the first question.
My second recommendation would be to look at the credentials of some of the folks on your list. It's good to know that they've put the time and effort to get those credentials, that they've "turned pro", so to speak, but don't put too much credence in them. There are plenty of excellent schools that aren't accredited, so there are folks out there who are amazing counselors and therapists, but they may not have all the alphabet soup on the end of their name. So look for credentials, but don't put too much weight on them.
All right, next be sure and ask about how much it costs to work with them. Do they take your insurance? Before you get wrapped around the axle around how much this is gonna cost, remember this is an investment in you. If this person can help you make the mindset shifts that enable you to propel your life into a new place, that's worth every penny. For me it certainly was. So, be sure to ask about costs, but remember it's an investment. It's not just an expense.
All right, so you're on your consultation visit. What do you feel like when you're in the presence of this person? What's your intuition? How did you feel when you walked in their office?
You know, one thing during my search for a therapist when I was going through my divorce, I met with a guy and I sat down on the couch and it was basically me talking the whole time. Look I didn't have time for this sitcom idea of what a therapist was. If I wanted to talk with somebody who just listened, my dog would have done a better job than this guy. So obviously, he got crossed off the list real quick.
So think about what it is that you want when you're going to these types of meetings. So is this somebody that can hold you through your hardship? Do you trust this person enough to be able to go there? It's a big question when you're considering a therapist
Another thing to think about is, are they able to challenge you in a positive way? You can meet a therapist or counselor that you develop a good rapport with, but if they're not able to help you grow, if they're not able to challenge you, hold you accountable and gently push you in the direction that you want to go, I mean, it's just another nice relationship. Which is great, but that's not what you're looking for here. So think about that - are they able to challenge you in a positive way?
Next, I recommend asking them if they've done their work. If they're a therapist and they actually haven't had any therapy? Yeah - you might wanna move them to the bottom of the list too. If they don't eat their own cooking, then, hey, I would think twice about working with that person.
So if politics or religion is important to you, feel free to ask about that. You know, people who are Christian or Democrat or Republican or whatnot, you may feel more comfortable working with someone who shares those similar beliefs to you. However I would expect that most therapists give you the "pro" response that, hey, what I believe isn't relevant to what we're doing here. It's not going to get in the way. It has the zero effect on the care that I deliver to you. So, ask but don't expect an answer.
All right! In the end, what is this relationship really like for you? What do your instincts tell you about this person that you're interviewing? You've asked all the questions. You've done all the vetting. What does your gut tell you?
Go with it! It's usually the right answer!
To get the questionnaire checklist for interviewing a therapist, click down below. It's in the show notes. Thank you so much for watching. If you like this, click "like". Consider subscribing for more.
I'm Patrick King, host of Transformative Television and until next time, take a deep breath! You got this! Cheers!