Does the idea of seeing a counsellor scare you? Are you nervous about trusting a stranger or for other people to find out that you’re struggling? Are you concerned that if you start talking you are scared of what will come up? Or you would try it but actually feel that your struggles aren't great enough. Many people feel this way. Despite all the progress made over recent years around mental health there is still a stigma about being vulnerable, about experiencing the whole range of human emotions (both positive and painful)
It takes courage to say, 'I am overwhelmed, this is something I do not know how to overcome on my own. I need help. ' When things are getting on top of us we may not have the strength to do anything different other than keep going, to survive.
Asking for help has often been associated as a sign of weakness. The first time I saw a Counsellor, responses from people around me were “oh what's wrong with you?” it was not meant to be negative, condescending or unsupportive it was just that those people had always been the 'pull your socks up and get on with it' types, toughing it (whatever 'it' was) in their view was the strong thing to do. Burying our emotions is like trying to hold a beachball underwater, it takes a lot of effort to keep it there and eventually it shoots up with such force seemingly out of nowhere!
If we flip the narrative from mental health to physical health for a moment here for the sake of demonstration. Would you walk around with a broken bone because in time you'll get over it? If you did you would probably start over compensating elsewhere, maybe you would begin limping or maybe your skin would change colour. Would you avoid going to a Doctor because you hadn't broken 'enough' bones? Or incase they find something else wrong with you? Maybe you would, but chances are you wouldn't. There is no competition when it comes to our health, physical or emotional the fact that we are struggling to look after ourselves alone is the sign to contact a professional.
There are many reasons why someone may avoid contacting a counsellor, despite needing emotional support. Here are 6 common reasons:
Stigma: Some people may feel ashamed or embarrassed about seeking counselling or mental health services due to the social stigma surrounding mental health.
Fear: Fear of the unknown or fear of being vulnerable can prevent individuals from seeking counselling services.
Lack of Awareness: Some individuals may not realise that they could benefit from counselling or may not understand the potential benefits of seeking counselling services.
Cost: Counselling services can be expensive, and some individuals may not have the financial resources to access these services.
Time constraints: Busy schedules can make it challenging to prioritise mental health, leading individuals to avoid seeking counselling services.
Previous negative experiences: Negative experiences with counselling or therapy in the past can lead to a reluctance to try again.
Do you recognise any of these in yourself or in those around you? Seeking help for mental health is a brave and positive step towards healing and personal growth. If you or someone you know is hesitant to seek counselling services, it's important to address these concerns and encourage them to explore their options. There are many resources available to support individuals in need of counselling, including free or low-cost services, online counselling, and support groups.
Sometimes the strongest thing you can do is ask for help. Reach out to friends, family or colleagues. It takes even more strength and courage and to say, I need help. If you need a little extra support there are professionals who are there to support you. Grab hold of that beach ball and throw it back, we've got you.
If you would like professional confidential and nonjudgemental counselling support book an appointment. I offer a safe space for you to take a breath, explore your emotions, gain clarity, and develop strategies for moving forward. Whether you're struggling with self-esteem, self-confidence, anxiety, depression, relationship issues, or simply looking for personal growth and self-improvement, I'm here to support you on your journey towards healing and well-being.