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3 Minutes Read

Why Therapy Doesn't Always Feel "Good"

Therapy often gets romanticized in movies and TV shows as a magical cure-all, leaving viewers picturing instant breakthroughs and emotional bliss. But for many people, the reality is far less glamorous. Therapy can be messy, challenging, and sometimes downright uncomfortable. This uncomfortable truth that we rarely see portrayed can lead to feelings of confusion, disappointment, and even doubt when you go to therapy in real life and it doesn't feel instantly "good." Here are some examples about what therapy is REALLY all about.  

Confronting uncomfortable realities

Therapy is about peeling back layers and unearthing the roots of our struggles. This often involves facing uncomfortable truths about ourselves, our relationships, and our past. Acknowledging these realities can be painful and trigger difficult emotions as part of the healing process.

Emotional detox

Sometimes, therapy feels like an emotional detox. As we release pent-up emotions and unpack suppressed experiences, we may experience a heightened sense of anxiety, grief, or anger. Although difficult or messy emotions are a normal part of the human experience, they can feel far from "good" in the moment.

The hard work of change

Making lasting change requires effort and commitment. We have to challenge ingrained patterns, develop new coping mechanisms, and step outside our comfort zones. It's like training a muscle – progress can be slow, and setbacks are inevitable.

Remember, therapy is a marathon, not a sprint. Just like building physical fitness takes time and dedication, building emotional resilience and developing healthy coping mechanisms takes consistent effort. Don't be discouraged if you don't experience immediate bliss - true growth often happens in the quietest moments, in the midst of discomfort and challenge.

How to make the therapy journey feel better

If you struggle to reframe your expectations and navigate the "not-so-good" parts of therapy, here are some reminders that could help:

Celebrate progress, not perfection

Focus on small victories, like identifying unhealthy patterns, setting boundaries, or expressing difficult emotions. Celebrate these steps as signs of progress, not milestones of perfection. 

Communicate with your therapist   

Open communication is key. Share your doubts and frustrations with your therapist. They can help you understand the process, adjust your expectations, and find ways to make therapy more effective for you.

Practice self-compassion

Be kind to yourself. This journey can be emotionally taxing, so practice self-compassion. Acknowledge your struggles, but also recognize your courage in seeking help and actively working on your wellbeing.

Even though it's not always sunshine and rainbows, therapy remains a powerful tool for healing and growth. It can help us understand ourselves better, develop healthy coping mechanisms, build stronger relationships, and ultimately live more fulfilling lives. So embrace the messy journey, celebrate the small victories, and remember, even though it may not always feel "good," therapy is ultimately leading you towards something better. If you’re ready to embark on this journey, click the link below and book a free call with one of our therapists at Salt River Therapy! 


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