Have you asked yourself recently “Why am I still struggling?”
When coming to therapy, there’s the hope that together you and your therapist will be able to resolve your nagging problems in life. So you commit to your appointments, put in the work to change habits and learn new skills. Once you’ve embraced those new habits and skills you and your therapist eventually have that talk about graduating you from therapy altogether. Once you’ve graduated you feel great and ready to tackle the world with your new outlook and toolkit strapped to your side! You might even feel untouchable by your previous problems.
However, as you continue down your path you encounter new roadblocks that weren’t present before, or even old roadblocks coming back to test you. You fumble for your toolkit but find yourself unable to find the right tool to take on the task at hand. You begin to question all of the hard work you’ve put in at counseling, and might even feel defeated in your ability to fully heal. If this describes you in any way, you aren’t alone. Many people struggle to successfully and fully implement new skills the first time around in therapy, hence why it is important to check in with your therapist at regularly scheduled intervals after graduating from consistent therapy.
Just like anything in life, learning new skills and implementing your toolbox may take repetition and reminders. Once you have “unplugged” and moved on it can be easy to forget all the tools you have at your disposal. As therapists, we would love to be able to give someone a set of tools and send them on their way, but it rarely ever works that way. More often than not we find ourselves revisiting many of the same problems more than once. This isn’t a bad thing though. It is in line with how therapy and learning really works. Each time you conquer a problem, or face it and reach out for help again your toolkit is made stronger. So the recommendation is simple. Don’t allow defeat and that feeling of struggle to weaken your skills or alter your new habits. Instead, reach out for help!
As therapists, we are always there for you, and understand that we all need help at times. Even though we graduate you and send you into the world, we are always here to help you maintain and stay strong! If you only take away once concept, take away this – life will always present challenges, new and old, but there is always somewhere to get help.
Devin Pinkston is a local mental health counselor and Gender Therapist in Grand Junction Colorado. Call to schedule a free consultation today at 970-644-2392.