One fear that people have before starting therapy is opening up and talking about their biggest fears or anxieties in front of a complete stranger.
Dr. Alison Ross was interviewed by US News & World Report about choosing a therapist that works for you, and how you know if therapy is working.
Will I feel comfortable in therapy?
I think the stereotype of the aloof, silent, ‘blank screen’ psychoanalyst continues to inform most people’s images of what an analyst or a psychodynamic therapist is like. While there are some who still practice in this traditional fashion, most psychodynamic clinicians would consider this approach old-school and outdated,” says Alison Ross, a psychologist and adjunct associate professor at City College of New York.
“Most analysts – myself included – are actively and warmly engaged with their patients and do not adhere to the notion that the analyst is some know-it-all who bestows his or her ‘knowledge’ on the patient.”
The first goal of every therapist is to build a warm rapport with their client, enabling the type of emotional work that makes therapy successful. You might consider talking on the phone with more than one psychologist, making sure to begin therapy with someone you feel you can connect to.
But when can you expect to start feeling better?
Therapy is designed to give you the tools you can use to start feeling better right away while taking the time to do the work that creates long-lasting changes. But how long should you remain with a therapist if you don’t feel that you are progressing?
Take the time to invest in therapy. It isn’t always a comfortable process, but it should feel more comfortable eventually. How you feel after beginning therapy will depend on a combination of factors, including the timing and frequency of therapy, the severity of the issue you are working on, your personal biology, and more.
But with all that said, I think after a couple of months of once-weekly therapy, something positive should be happening to suggest that the fit between patient and therapist is a good one and that things are on track,” Dr. Ross says.
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Reach out today
If you’re struggling with stress, anxiety, or other mental health issues, consider therapy with Dr. Ross, clinical psychologist in Midtown Manhattan. To learn more, contact Dr. Alison Ross. You can get in touch by phone or through the contact form.