If you have never attended a therapy with a therapist before, you might be curious about what to expect. It is totally normal to be nervous about your first session. I went through therapy myself, so I know what it’s like to be sitting in your chair. Below I will discuss what you should expect in therapy so you can take the fear of the unknown out of the equation.
After getting scheduled for an appointment with me at Fort Wellness Counseling, you will receive an emailed appointment reminder about your first session of therapy. On the day of the appointment I will send you a text message reminder about the appointment with the address. Feel free to respond that you will make it or if you have any questions, as this reminder will be coming directly from me.
Map out the drive ahead of time so you are not having to do this last minute! Not doing so might make it nerve wrecking. You can also see where we are located.
Upon your arrival, I will greet you at the door and introduce myself. I will ask you if you want something to drink, such as a cold bottled water, a cup of hot tea, or a fresh cup of hot coffee. I will then ask you to have a seat in our waiting area in order for you to fill out your initial paperwork.
The initial paperwork which includes two important forms: 1.) The Main Intake Form (which is a typical intake form that you would expect to see in a medical provider’s office), and 2.) The Orientation and Informed Consent Form. The Orientation and Informed Consent Form outlines information such as confidentiality, the cost of therapy, cancellation policy, the risk in attending therapy, etc.
Upon finishing the paperwork, we will head into my office. We will spend the first 5 to 10 minutes reviewing the paperwork, what to expect in therapy, how confidentiality applies to therapy, my cancellation policy, and other items on the Orientation & Informed Consent Form.
After reviewing this information, we will then be able to get started with the counseling process.
The first question I like to start sessions with is something along the lines of, “what brings you in here today” or, “where do you want to start?” This is usually the part where you will explain the presenting reasons for attending therapy. I will ask some follow-up questions to get a good understanding of the problem.
Throughout the first session, I will inquire about your hopes and goals for therapy. I will ask you to help define some of the specific changes that you want to see in yourself that will indicate to you that you are getting the results you want. I will ask if you have been to therapy before or not and other types of background questions that will help me get a good understanding of your past. Every client is unique, and every situation is different. So while this article is a general guide for what you should expect in therapy, your treatment at Fort Wellness Counseling is individualized and your first session will be too.
I will discuss the counseling process and inquire about how frequently you are hoping to attend. While I will tell you my professional recommendation for how often I think would be appropriate for you to attend therapy, the frequency of therapy will be determined on the severity of the problem and how often you want to come in. This is a decision that we will discuss together, but that choice is yours to make. Counseling will usually start off at once per week or every other week (although for some it is monthly), and then as therapy progresses scale that back when it is appropriate.
Toward the end of the first session, I will ask you if you found the session to be helpful. A common question would be, “What, if anything, was helpful about this session today?” At the end of the session, I will wrap up and then get your next session scheduled if you want to proceed, and lastly, take payment. Please see the FAQ page, Services page and the Schedule for our prices listed so there are no surprises when you show up! Therapy is an investment in yourself that you deserve to treat yourself to.
After you leave the first session, it is helpful to check in with yourself about how you thought the session went. Was it comfortable? Was it helpful? Is there any information you withheld, and why? Do you think that you “clicked” well with me and that I understood you? Keep in mind that your desired results will not come after just one session.
But, you should have a good idea of whether or not you think you will enjoy working with me or not. According to research, one of the most important factors on therapeutic outcomes is what is referred to as the therapeutic alliance. In short, the therapeutic alliance is how well you and your therapist connect, behave, and engage with each other. If you do not think I was a good fit because you had a difficult time connecting with me, don’t worry – there are several others in the area that do great work! What is important is that you find a therapist that will be helpful for you in order for you to accomplish what you want to achieve while attending therapy.
If you are interested in seeing if Fort Wellness Counseling in Fort Worth will be a good fit for what you are hoping to accomplish in therapy, you can email me at email@example.com, use the Contact Form, or call or text me at 682-232-4003. If you call and I don’t answer immediately, just leave a voicemail and I will return your call as soon as possible. Please note that I will not answer the phone call during the middle of a counseling session, but rest assured, I will provide you with that same luxury. You can schedule an appointment by visiting our online booking page.
This is Part 3 of a 3 part series to help guide you so that you can learn more helpful information about the counseling process. In Part One, I discussed What is Counseling, Mental Health Therapy, Psychotherapy and Talk Therapy? In Part Two, I discussed The Benefits of Attending Therapy with a Counselor and Therapist. This final Part was about What To Expect At Your First Therapy Session at Fort Wellness Counseling in Fort Worth, TX.