So maybe you know in your heart of hearts that it’s time to ask for help in handling your day-to-day stresses. Maybe your anxiety level has become paralyzing, or your panic attacks are more frequent. Maybe your depression isn’t lifting as fast as it used to, or you feel like you’re doing the same thing expecting different results, and continuing to get no results. Maybe your energy is depleted and you’re tired on emotional, physical, spiritual levels and things are not getting better as the days go on, they are getting worse. Maybe big life events have happened that are the source of your stress, or maybe it’s just in general getting harder and harder to BE, to stay committed to your promises, to face the world at all. Maybe it’s all just too much to carry alone.
Then a tiny voice inside of you says “maybe I should get help” and then maybe that louder, leader voice enters your thoughts and says “therapy is for losers” or “therapy is scary” or “therapy doesn’t work” or “only sissies get therapy” and this voice blocks any action toward reaching out for that help. Then maybe you go back to doing nothing about it, and now years are passing and the cycle continues…and here you find yourself reading this blog and something resonates with you.
Taking any step to getting help is a mixed bag. Stepping into the unknown IS scary. Facing the shadow of ourselves and bringing to light what has been kept in the dark can be intimidating and overwhelming. It can also be like going on an excavation, exciting and full of adventure. Beginning the soul’s journey of healing old wounds and facing patterns that no longer serve us is a process that mingles with internal bravery, compassion, and a warrior-like attitude. The stigma around getting therapy holds that “therapy is for sissies.” It is quite the opposite. Therapy is for warriors, therapy is for wisdom keepers, therapy is for the strongest of the community, and definitely not the weakest.
Notice if your internal voice communicates a message of shame around seeking help, or a message of curiosity. Chances are, shame is there from outside forces – from culture, community, or old family rules. A lot of us are from a “pull yourself up by your bootstraps” mentality as that was a strong family trait from generations past. There is truth to this message, no doubt we all must find the strength to go on when the going gets tough. Yet when it comes to mental and emotional health, having a fresh perspective and someone to really listen, someone who sees you and offers professional support, shining the way like a flashlight on the darkest days, can be just what the doctor ordered.