Are you in therapy or thinking about starting therapy? How do you know if it is working? While there is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question, there are some things you can look for. In this post, we will explore some of the telltale signs that you’re getting successful therapy. We will also discuss how to communicate with your therapist if you feel like it is not working for you.
Whether you are just starting therapy or have been in treatment for a while, read on for tips on how to determine if your therapy is effective, how to set therapy goals, and how to get the most out of your therapy sessions.
How do I know if therapy works?
If you are struggling with depression, anxiety, or any other mental health issue, it can be hard to see progress and measure success. You may feel like things are not getting better, even if significant progress has already been made. Effective therapy can help you get to the root of your issues and start to see progress, even when things feel difficult.
There are a few key things to look for when assessing whether therapy is working for you:
- You are feeling more comfortable discussing your thoughts and feelings with your therapist.
- You are starting to understand yourself better.
- You are learning coping mechanisms and tools to deal with difficult situations.
- You feel like you are making progress towards your goals.
- Your relationships with others are improving.
- You are feeling more hopeful about the future.
If you are seeing any of the above changes, it is a good sign that your therapy is working. Trust the process and keep up the good work!
If you are not seeing any of these changes, it doesn’t necessarily mean that therapy isn’t working. Remember, therapy is a process and it takes time to see results. If you’ve just started therapy, you can’t expect better life satisfaction after just a couple of sessions. It takes time to build a good therapeutic relationship and to learn and practice behavioral changes.
But if you’re not seeing improvement or effective treatment after a few months, it might be time to look for a different licensed therapist or develop a new treatment plan. You and your therapist should discuss how you’re feeling about therapy and if you think it’s working.
Is therapy working for me? Am I making progress?
The journey of every person is different in life and we each face unique challenges and seek different things from therapy. We all just want to see improvement in our health and feel good about our relationships with friends and family.
It may not always be clear whether your sessions are working, but here are some things you can do to get a sense of how therapy is going:
Track changes in your mood and symptoms
If, for example, you’re suffering from past traumas and having panic attacks, you and your therapist can track how many attacks you’re having per week. If the number of panic attacks decreases, that’s a sign that therapy is working.
You can also keep track of your mood on a scale from one to 100. If you’re feeling down or anxious, rate your mood before and after each therapy session and each of your day-to-day activities. If something makes you feel worse or better, you’ll have a better understanding of what works for you and what doesn’t.
Assess your progress with specific tools
There are different ways to measure how well therapy is working. By using these tools you’ll be able to track improvement and gain insight into whether your therapy is working.
Here are some common ones:
The Outcome Questionnaire (OQ) measures how much symptoms have changed since therapy began.
The Symptom Checklist (SCL) measures how much symptoms have changed in the past week.
The Session Rating Scale (SRS) measures how satisfied you are with each therapy session.
The Working Alliance Inventory (WAI) measures how well you and your therapist work together.
These tools can be helpful in measuring your progress, but ultimately it’s up to you to decide if your goals are being met or if you and your therapist are on the same page.
Share progress with your therapist
The more your therapist understands how you’re feeling, the better they can help you. Make sure both you and your therapist agree that you’re moving in a positive direction and that the goals you’ve set are realistic.
After each session, it also helps to take a few minutes to jot down your emotions and what topics were covered. This will help you keep track of your progress and give you something to refer back to if you feel like you’re stuck.
Are you developing coping skills?
The key to lasting change and your ability to handle situations that used to trigger you is learning how to cope in a healthier way. This might look like journaling, deep breathing exercises, or listening to calm music when you start to feel overwhelmed. If you’re not sure how well you’re coping, ask your therapist for guidance or take our free mental health assessment.
Successful therapy can take time
It can take weeks or months before you start to feel like therapy works. Trust the process and be patient with yourself. If you’re feeling frustrated, talk to your therapist about how you’re feeling. They can help you adjust your treatment plan or give you additional resources to help you through this tough time.
What can determine if therapy will be successful?
There’s no one-size-fits-all answer to this question. However, here are three factors that can play a role in how successful therapy is for you:
- The quality of the relationship between you and your therapist
- How well you’re able to engage in the therapeutic process
- Your willingness to do the work required outside of therapy sessions (e.g., practicing coping skills, taking medication as prescribed)
If you’re concerned about how well therapy is going, talk to your therapist. They can help you assess whether or not therapy is right for you and make necessary adjustments to ensure that you’re getting the most out of your treatment.
7 Signs that therapy is working
If you’re experiencing any of these feelings, it’s a good sign that therapy is working for you. However, keep in mind that everyone progresses at their own pace and there is no set timeline for how long it should take to see results.
- You feel more understood by your therapist
- You’re able to openly share your thoughts and feelings without feeling judged
- You feel like you’re making progress towards your goals
- You’re starting to see changes in how you think and behave outside of sessions
- Your relationships with others are improving
- You’re feeling better about yourself overall
- You’re beginning to enjoy activities that you used to find stressful or difficult
How long does it take to see results from therapy?
Your therapy goals may be different from someone else’s, which means that the timeline for seeing results will be different as well. It’s important to keep in mind that therapy is a process, and it may take some time to see results. However, if you’re not seeing any progress after a few months, it may be time to reassess your goals or try a different approach.
What if my therapist isn’t a good match for me?
Therapists aren’t infallible and sometimes people just don’t gel well. If you’ve been seeing your therapist for a while and you’re not sure if they’re the right fit, it’s important to trust your gut and speak up. Therapy is a collaborative process and you should feel like an active participant in your own care.
It could be that you need to adjust the focus of your therapy or try a different approach altogether. Don’t be afraid to ask for what you need! The most important thing is that you feel like you’re making headway towards reaching your goals.
Online Mental Health Services at Mindflow Recovery
Whether you’re looking for couples therapy or psychiatric services, Mindflow Recovery offers a range of online mental health services to fit your needs. Our team of highly trained and experienced therapists is here to help you heal, grow, and thrive.
Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you achieve your goals. It could be the first step on your journey to a happier and healthier life.