When we feel the pain of depression, anxiety, and addiction, the lucky ones among us seek help. But, usually, we are confronted with a tremendous challenge. We are confronted with people telling us that in order to get help, we have to give up our freedom, and our right to discern and choose the treatment that feels right to us.
We are told that we don’t have the capacity to choose the right help because our mental health is not reliable. There is some merit to this argument. We know that in active addiction, and depression, we want to deny that we have a problem. Because it is hard to accept that we have a mental health or substance abuse problem.
But, as soon as we come across someone that inspires us to reach our potential, even if we are not ready to stop our negative behaviors, we can be motivated to seek treatment. For the sake of becoming more fit, successful, and to stop our suffering. We may not see everything clearly, but we can feel when we can trust somebody. And we can know if what they do is effective for us.
The research on the outcomes of therapy says that the relationship with a therapist influences outcomes more than anything else. Even if we are not thinking straight, we can feel if the relationship is a good one or not. This is better than choosing help based on credentials, degrees, licensing, ratings, popularity, and Google searches. Degrees mean that someone was a good student. Licensing means that they were good at following instructions, and passing tests. Ratings mean that they are good at customer service. Popularity means that they are good at marketing. Being at the top of Google searches means that they have a lot of money to spend on Google search keywords and Adwords.
They may also be good at doing therapy, but this will come across in the relationship. And, in the relationship, you are the expert. No one else. So, take charge of your mental health treatment, and seek to do it your way, with a person that you trust.