The coronavirus is changing the world in countless ways and moving much of our lives online. Every industry is feeling the impact, including counseling. As a result, most therapists are offering some version of telemental health. These services typically include phone or video sessions, email check-ins, or chat, so you have several options for support. But if you are someone used to seeing your therapist in person, online counseling can feel like a big switch.
Improving Your Online Counseling Experience
How can you make the most of this new-to-you counseling format?
1) Familiarize yourself with the benefits of online counseling. Telemental health can be great for people who live in remote areas, giving them access to specialists outside of their immediate area. It also does not require a commute or sitting in a waiting room — helpful during a time of quarantine and sheltering in place!
2) Take advantage of your therapist’s free consultations and tips for how to use their distance counseling platform. You don’t want to spend valuable session time on technical issues.
3) Ensure you have a private, distraction-free place in which to hold your sessions. Maximize your chances of feeling comfortable and being able to focus, even if it means sitting in your car in the driveway!
4) Keep a flexible, adaptable attitude. Technological issues can happen on either side, through no fault of yours or your therapist’s. Maintaining good communication and talking in advance about what to do when issues arise can also help.
5) Recognize this is temporary, if you want it to be. Online counseling is a stop-gap measure for getting support during the pandemic but it could be your new preference, too. This choice is up to you, based on circumstance.
If you are interested in accessing telemental health, please reach out. Our practice, Nova Terra Therapy, offers video sessions and phone support. We would love the chance to work with you.