Everything you need to know about your first time therapy
Everything you need to know about your first time therapy

If you have been considering going into therapy, the amount of available information can be overwhelming. Which therapy is right for you? Do you need a referral? Do you have to pay for it yourself? How do I take my first step? All these questions can arise when considering going into therapy. If you are considering going into therapy for the first time, it is good to know and think about the following things.

Think about you needs and complaints

Write down the complaints that you experience. Also try to come up with some examples. Are the complaints focused on one area in your life or on multiple areas? How are these complaints limiting you in your daily life? You can also ask yourself how long these symptoms have been present in your life. You can then start thinking about the support you would like to receive. What are your needs when it comes to counseling? Do you want someone to think along with you, do you need practical support or do you want to reflect on certain situations in the past? It is of course also possible that your complaints are present in several areas of life, but that you prefer to focus on one aspect.

Different types of therapies

Feel free to use Google to find out which therapies are available and what might suit you. You will probably discuss the different types of therapies after your intake with a therapist. But still, you can check out yourself what is out there. In addition, you can find out online which mental healthcare institutions or therapists are available in your area. Who knows, maybe you’d rather sign up with a coach than with a psychologist. Or you might discover that specialised care is offered for the problems that you experience (addiction, concentration problems, etc.). Many independent therapists or coaches have their own website on which they have placed their photo and information about their way of working. This often gives an impression of what you can expect from them.

Contact your general practitioner

This is an important step because your doctor is familiar with the social institutions in your area. In addition, your general practitioner can think along with you and help you to make your request for help concrete. It could also be the case that your general practitioner advise you to talk with the POH GGZ (practice supporter) to make your request for mental support concrete and this person can also help you in finding the right support. You often need a referral from your doctor to be eligible for mental health care that is insured.

Take into account the (long) waiting lists

Unfortunately, there are often (long) waiting lists regarding mental health care. That is why it is important to take your complaints seriously. Don’t wait too long to ask for help. If you have the feeling that the waiting lists are too long and need help sooner, you can ask your health insurance if you would eligible for that. You can find more information about this on the websites of the health insurance.

Relationship with your therapist

You may not immediately feel a click with your therapist / coach. Give it some time. You may need a few conversations to feel comfortable. Also, if you do not feel a click after a few conversations, tell your therapist. If you have the feeling that you are not being taken seriously, also tell your therapist. It is good to tell your the therapist how you are feeling about him/ her.

Try to be patient

Therapy is a process. It is often the case that you start to feel worse at the beginning because all the emotions / complaints that you experience are discussed in detail. In addition, it takes time to implement behavioral change. Remember that the behavioral patterns that you are currently working on have probably evolved over the years. This means that you also need time to learn new behavior. In addition, the ups and downs are also part of a process.

NiceDay app

Are you struggling with mental health issues? Or do you know someone who is struggling with mental health issues? Via NiceDay we treat people with depression, anxiety and stress complaints. At the end of the treatment we prepare a relapse prevention plan together with the client. Are you interested? Download the app or ask for information via support@niceday.app.

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Deel dit artikel! Als dit artikel voor jou inzichtelijk was, deel het dan met je omgeving - laten we het samen hebben over mentale gezondheid.


Hi, my name is Rita and via NiceDay I offer online treatment. That means that you will receive help on the moments you need it the most. It doesn’t matter where you live, you can connect with me, we don’t have a waiting list! We can chat or talk via video calling. It’s all about you and together we design a online treatment that fits your needs. We can communicate directly from your smartphone.

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