Are You Wasting Your Time in Therapy? by Dr. Jim Nolan
My Own Experience
I started seeing a new therapist last week. I’m feeling good about it.
In the past, I think I was too much of a wise guy, an entertainer, a story teller, and I knew the business, and therapists let me get away with it. More to the point, I let me get away with it. I don’t think it was really “therapy”, now that I look back on it. I worked successfully over the years with Life Coaches, but not with therapists.
This time feels different. I am ready. I don’t need to be amusing or a “good client”, or whatever the hell it is we do when we are being “in therapy”, and not getting anything much out of it. I’m in a position to make a commitment to myself, and I think that is going to make the difference.
What’s Good Therapy About?
It’s pretty much about being in touch with our own experience, and being willing to sit with it. Of course, there will be “decision times”, and “action plan times”, but sometimes in the course of therapy we just have to BE with the experience we have created, and see it for what it is, and honor it, and find a way to be OK with ourselves for having created or chosen it.
That’s not as easy as it sounds.
As a therapist, I listen/work hard to understand where you are, in your experience NOW. I may “know” that taking your hand off the hot stove is going to be necessary, eventually, for your hand to heal. But I am able to see when it is just not your time yet, and be with you in the experience until it IS that time. For more thoughts on how I work you can see my web site…
If you are “in therapy”, and feel it’s getting stale, and has been for a while; if it feels like you are just telling your “stories of the week” but not getting to any Big Picture stuff in your therapy—then you may want to consider two things:
- Maybe you’re not ready to actually do the work (and that’s OK, but no sense in paying for it weekly and then not using it…)
- You may be working with the wrong person for this time, or issue, in your life. Not all therapists are good for all things, at all times.
Think about it. It’s YOUR life. It’s worth reflecting about…