One of the most serious problems with the current counselling industry in the United Kingdom is the way in which there seems to be so much contradictory information doing the rounds. This is of course not entirely surprising given the fact that it’s often regarded as something of a taboo subject. The large majority of people believe that professional counselling is not necessarily for them, but exists for people with issues much more serious than their own.
The usual problem is, people are naturally used to keep their issues to themselves and live their lives in a state of denial, even if they realise something is not quite right. Additionally, there’s also a big deal of confusion and misunderstanding when it comes to the subject of therapy and counselling. One of the reasons is because there are a large number of established falsehoods that continue to paint a relatively inaccurate picture of what therapy and counselling really are about. The more you read into these untruths, the less likely you are to seek the help you need, where and when you need it.
So with this in mind, here is a short overview of a just a few of the most common and long-standing myths about counselling you have probably come across already:
Counselling is only for those hitting rock-bottom
Naturally, the single most common untruth when it comes to professional therapy and counselling is that which suggests it’s a service needed only for those with extremely serious issues. While it’s true to say that professional counselling has the potential to completely transform the lives of those in pretty desperate scenarios, this should not mean that you need to be at the end of your rope to be able to benefit greatly from counselling and therapy. Just as gambling addiction counsellors on Harley Street could help people with serious gambling problems, there are counsellors that focus on anxiety issues, relationship, stress, self-confidence and so on. The truth of the matter is that there is really no such thing as an issue too small to be brought to the attention of the experts. If it’s something that has the potential to improve your life quality, it’s something worth talking about.
You already suspect what the counsellor will tell you
There are always those people who are convinced that they already know exactly what advice the counsellor would offer them and believe that as such, there is really no sense in speaking to one. Subsequently, they try to find their own way around their issues and deal with things solo. The truth is though, it is actually quite to the contrary as it is the job of the professional counsellor to bring up, suggest and discuss things that you yourself has never thought about otherwise. Professional counselling is not about stating the obvious facts and telling people what they may have already know, but rather about educating, challenging and steering people in the right direction.
Counselling is extremely expensive
While it is true to say that you can certainly pay a hefty price for professional counselling, this doesn’t necessarily mean all therapy and counselling services are impossibly expensive. Contrary to what many people believe, most counsellors have chosen their line of work not for the money, but rather for their genuine passion for assisting people. Even if your finances are limited, this doesn’t in any way mean you will not be able to benefit from truly excellent counselling.
To ask for professional help means to admit failure
While the reasoning behind this particular untruth is relatively understandable, it’s also hugely misguided. The reason is simple – while it’s technically easy to keep your problems to yourself and pretend everything is fine, it takes enormous courage, strength and confidence to bring them out into the open and talk about them with a professional. Asking for assistance when assistance is needed isn’t a sign of weakness; it’s a sign of proactivity and common sense. When you know there is something that can make a real and lasting difference in your life, it only makes sense to embrace it.
It would be more natural to speak to a family member or a friend
Last but not least, speaking to family members and friends about personal problems can certainly help, but it is a completely different process than professional counselling. The reason is that when you speak with a person who is somehow emotionally attached to you, it’s unlikely that either of you will be 100% impartial and honest. You need advice that is objective and free of emotion – professional counsellors fit the bill.