How I felt when I went to counselling……

I have been to counselling and this is how I felt……

Why did I go to counselling……
First of all I had to, so I could qualify as a counsellor.
As well as having several years training at college, a portfolio, assignments, placement, supervision and an exam, I had to have personal counselling before I could become qualified.
Although I didn’t think ‘I needed counselling’, there was a lot of stuff that I was keeping inside and knew it would be better for me if I got it all out – and I am so glad I did.

Counselling for me…..
I knew I was going to be opening myself up, so having a counsellor I trusted, respected, who would ‘get me’ and not judge me was important and luckily I knew the right counsellor for me.
The first time I went, I felt so nervous, I had a rapid heart beat, a dry throat and the biggest knot in my stomach.
I kept thinking….’what will I say’, ‘what will she think’, ‘I can’t do this’ and so on………I was that nervous, I parked my car several times, lined it up, nearer to the kerb, further out, must be perfect…..I think being perfect was definitely something I would be talking about!!

What do I talk about?……
Can I talk about anything? – yes I can and I did, seems like it was a lot of rambling nonsense at times, until my counsellor reflected it back and it made sense.
What if I talk to much, not enough or I’m silent? – all of those, I talked non stop at times, sometimes I had nothing to say, wondering ‘am I doing this right’ (being perfect again!!)
Will she judge me if I tell her my dark secrets, will she think I am an awful person for what I was thinking? – no, there was no judgement, only understanding, patience, respect and kindness, with a gentle ‘you are ok and normal’………what a relief.
This allowed me to be more open about my thoughts and feelings.
What if I cried? – oh I did a lot of that and that was ok as well (thank goodness for the box of tissues beside me!!), there was also some laughter along the way.
What’s the point, it’s not working – yep there were times like that, and then things clicked, patterns I had followed made sense, I began to see myself, I had light bulb moments, I let things go, I understood why I kept the things I did and I learnt ways for me to cope in certain situations…..and I finally understood the need to be ‘perfect’ and today ‘I am good enough’.

What I learnt by going to counselling……
– That counselling gave me a safe space of my own to be me, no competing with anyone else, where I could talk about how I felt freely, explore who I was, without judgement or criticism.
– I began to understand myself, I am confident to make changes and I am much happier with life.
– I found when I look inside myself I have the answers.
– That now I can self counsel, through my own journaling and processing.
– I guess if I had never trained as a counsellor, I may never had counselling and I would have missed out on one of the most impactful, positive, life changing and rewarding experiences of my life.

I do know what it feels like to go to counselling – for me.

If you think this would help someone, please share.

If you feel you would benefit from having counselling with me, please contact me via my website www.apluscounselling.co.uk