When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, many aspects of our lives shifted to an online platform. Work, school, and socializing have found a new place in the digital world. Since the pandemic began, we’ve been actively working towards adjusting to these new standards.
Therapy has been no exception to this new digital shift, and many people now talk to a therapist online instead of in person. There are many benefits to online therapy, but you may still feel hesitant.
Many people picture therapy as happening in an office, face-to-face — so how do we possibly transform that to an online platform? Luckily, online therapy isn’t as intimidating as it may seem, and there are things you can expect going into your first session.
You Will Experience the Same Level of Care
Online therapy is highly effective — just as much so as in-person therapy. In fact, some people find it more convenient and accessible than traditional therapy. When you go into your first online session, know that you are getting the same quality of care that you would be in a face-to-face session.
Your therapist is there to devote their sole attention to you and help you work through your problems. Many people assume that online therapy isn’t as effective as in-person therapy, but this isn’t the case. You will receive an excellent level of care during your online sessions.
You May Not Know What to Say at First
Your first meeting with an online therapist may seem a little awkward at first. First meetings can always be a bit awkward to navigate. Some people find that an online platform adds another layer of complexity. Luckily, your therapist will be there to guide you through the session. Even if this is your first time using technology for a therapy appointment, it’s likely not your therapist’s first time.
You may also feel unsure about what to say first or how to start the conversation. This feeling is normal, and over time, it is much more comfortable to engage with your therapist over a video chat. You can always start by talking about your day or how you’re feeling, and from there, you can get the ball rolling.
You Will Have Control of the Conversation
Like in face-to-face therapy, your needs are the priority in an online session. You will have control of the conversation, and you don’t have to talk about anything that makes you uncomfortable or upset. Of course, to get the most out of therapy, you have to open up — however, you can do this at a pace that makes you most comfortable.
Your therapist may suggest a topic or navigate back to a conversation throughout your sessions, but remember that you are the one in charge. Your therapist is there to listen and help guide you through your problems, and this is still true even in an online setting.
You May Feel More Comfortable with Online Therapy Over Time
Though therapy sessions typically happen in-person, many people have come to enjoy the benefits of online sessions. Over time, you may come to find comfort in online sessions and enjoy the convenience and accessibility.
Online therapy sessions can happen virtually anywhere. Because of this convenience, they remove the pressure or nervousness that some people feel during an in-person session. After a few sessions, it will become easier to open up to your therapist. And, over time, it will feel less like you’re talking over a video chat or phone call.
Now that we’re nearly a year into the pandemic, many people are experiencing mental health issues. Because medical practices are shifting to online platforms in any way they can, you may think that there aren’t resources for mental health.
There are resources available, however, and online therapy is highly effective. Now that you know what it’s like talking to an online therapist, you can schedule an appointment with ease, knowing that you’re doing the right thing for your mental health.