Is Counseling Helpful?
Research on the outcome of counseling has been conducted for a few decades. Some of the highlights about positive treatment effects include:
A highly regarded study indicated that at the end of treatment, the average client "is better off than 80 percent of those who need therapy but remain untreated," (Smith, Glass, and Miller, 1980, The Benefits of Psychotherapy, pg. 124).
A research article by Lipsey and Wilson, 1993, in The American Psychologist stated that "psychological treatments are as beneficial or more so than medical and educational help."
"...psychological treatments are as beneficial or more so than medical and educational help."
What is Counseling?
Is Counseling for Me?
Is Counseling Helpful?
The Stages of Counseling
Isn't counseling only for the severely-troubled?
People struggling with severe mental illnesses will usually require inpatient treatment and will not be able to benefit form outpatient treatment until they are more stable. Counseling is more apt for the healthy person, who is going through problems that are commonly experienced by others. In fact, many clients who come to see me are fairly healthy people, who request help with problems like lack of direction in life, limited self-understanding, relational problems, feeling overstressed, out of control and even feeling disconnected from God.
Shouldn't I be able to handle this on my own?
Everyone attempts, often with some success, to self-manage his or her problems. However, there are some problems that no one is able to manage on his or her own. One reason is that in a crisis situation our emotions can feel overwhelming, which causes us to lose objectivity. At other times, you need another's help, because you have defense mechanisms that blind you to truths about yourself and the world around you.
Others can see things about us when we fail to perceive them. A general rule of thumb is: if you are in a severe crisis period or have been struggling with the same individual or relational problem for more than six months, you need to seek professional help.
My recommendation is that you consider coming in for a one session consultation. This enables you to talk over your concerns and get a sense if you believe that I can help. Coming in for a consultation will enable you to make a more informed choice about this decision.