For many people, the idea of opening up about their innermost thoughts and concerns to a stranger – whether in person, over the phone, or in a virtual space – can cause feelings of anxiety or even dread. After all, many of us are taught not to talk about mental health with anyone, let alone someone who hardly knows us.
However, the practice of doing short consultations with a potential therapist is very common, because it’s important to establish personality, compatibility, and a mutual respect. In fact, we’ve written whole blogs before about finding the best counsellor for you! In this blog, let’s talk about what you can expect during a therapy consultation , and why those first 15-minute sessions are so important.
Getting to Know Your Therapist
Imagine arriving to your first therapy session, having never been to one before. You don’t know who you’ll be meeting or what their strengths are, and you don’t know how much they know about you. Maybe you’re getting flustered because you’re stuck filling out the intake paperwork, and you’re already on edge about something that happened earlier…
Does that sound like a good way to start a healing, professional relationship? Probably not!
We offer a completely free, 15-minute phone consultation with any of our available therapists – before booking anything – so that you can avoid being stuck in a situation like this. In this call, you’ll have a chance to ask and answer some simple questions, get a sense of what a therapist can offer you, and get an overall feel for the person you’re talking to.
There’s no need to be stressed about it, as there’s no “right” or “wrong” way for the call to go. Sometimes, you really feel a connection and get the sense that the therapist’s style and approach will work for you. If so, that’s great! You can book a proper appointment to follow up and continue your journey. But sometimes, you may also not feel connected at all – and that’s okay, too. We don’t take it personally if you decide not to use our services, because the most important thing is that you feel you’re getting exactly what you need.
What Happens If I Don’t Want This Therapist?
Like we said above, if you choose not to pursue the services of the therapist you spoke to, that’s completely fine. You can decide right there on the spot if you feel strongly, or you can take some time to decide after the call has finished.
There doesn’t have to be a specific reason, either. Sometimes it’s a matter of compatibility, but it is often due to things like areas of specialization (e.g., Accelerated Resolution Therapy vs. Cognitive-Behavioural Therapy), time commitments, or simply “not the right person at the right time”. There are even situations where we might recommend someone else if we feel they will better match your unique needs. Ultimately, though, the only person who can really make the final decision is you.
Why Are Therapy Consultations Important?
At the core, these small introductory meetings – just fifteen minutes over the phone – can set the tone and course for your entire therapy relationship. They are the first impressions you get of each other, and they will help your overall therapy experience be less intimidating and much more empowering.
If you want to know more about the details of these consultations, or you’d like to book one for yourself, the process has never been easier. You can reach out via email, phone, or our online form and we would be happy to explain more about our counselling services – and set you up for a 15-minute chat with one of our therapists, so we can help you decide what’s best for you.
We look forward to helping you get the most out of your counselling sessions in Calgary!