There is still a lot of stigma around therapy that can prevent people from accessing it. Even if you support others for therapy, without judgement, it can be easy to see therapy as a failure for ourselves.
This is because of social and cultural belief systems that perpetuate misconceptions, such as that therapy is only for people suffering the worst mental health crises, or that emotional support is somehow a sign of weakness. These misconceptions cause many people to feel hesitant about reaching out for help when they need it.
Issues with accessibility to mental healthcare, including cost, only reinforce and perpetuate the stigma. When mental healthcare is more normalized and accessible, such as through robust workplace mental healthcare strategies, people are more likely to feel confident in getting help.
It’s a common misconception that therapy is only for helping through pain or distress. However, therapy can be powerful for self-discovery and growth.
Exploring thoughts, emotions and behaviours can foster a powerful sense of self-awareness. Therapy can help with conflict resolution, communication, and decision-making. This kind of self-empowerment can give people confidence to make choices for growth (vs. survival or self-protection) and make it easier to bounce back from adversity.
A stronger sense of self can help people move through a fear of the unknown, build confidence in setting new goals, and inspire joy in life. Personal growth can be powerful and strengthening when going through life changes like career shifts, evolution of family and friendships, relationship changes or loss.
- Written by Nicole Laoutaris