How To Get The Most Out Of Therapy - 15 Therapist Tips

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21 November 2023

8 Mins

Recent studies show that mental health problems affect one in every five young people and two-thirds of them are not receiving the care they need. That’s where the therapy comes in, which presents a promising opportunity for managing these challenges. Leveraging therapy to its full potential involves understanding how it can effectively support mental health. However, it requires an investment in time, effort, and resources.

To truly benefit from therapy, it's important to understand what makes it effective and how to maximize its impact. So, let’s explore the strategies aimed at getting the most out of therapy so that you receive the most comprehensive care possible.

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15 Therapist-Approved Tips for Getting the Most Out of Therapy

Starting individual therapy can be a powerful step toward better mental health. Therapy helps you understand your thoughts, feelings, and actions so you can make positive changes. Although therapy isn't as difficult as we think, it is important to make sure that we make the most of it.

In this guide, we'll explore 15 therapy tips to understand how to get the most out of therapy sessions. By following these therapy tips, you can progress faster and reap the fruits of your hard work. Healing and improving your mental health may take effort, but you will gain the benefits after dedicating the time and effort to each session.

1. Be focused

Stay focused on yourself during the therapy session to get the most out of it. This is a time to explore your thoughts, feelings, and experiences. The purpose of this technique is to focus on your personal development and well-being. By being mindful of your needs and concerns, you will be able to express your thoughts to the therapist and gain beneficial insights for your mental health and self-improvement.

2. Be honest and vulnerable

In the field of therapy, it is important to be honest and allow yourself to be vulnerable. Clinicians encourage this method, as it paves the way for real progress. But what to get out of therapy? When you share openly and allow yourself to be vulnerable, it enables the therapist to better understand your situation and helps discover deeper issues. It is often in these moments of openness that the deepest breakthroughs occur.

Be honest and vulnerable

3. Know what you want to get out of sessions

Before starting any therapy, it is essential to outline your objectives. Whether it's individual counseling or couples therapy, it's important to understand what you want to achieve from the sessions. Before your initial meeting, take time to identify why you are asking for help and what specific goals you want to accomplish. Having a clear understanding of your goals benefits both you and your therapist, providing a roadmap for effective treatment and strengthening the therapeutic process.

4. Make notes

During your therapy session, writing down key points or insights can be incredibly helpful. Taking notes helps to reinforce what you have discussed and can encourage further reflection between sessions. These notes can serve as a guide, reminding you of valuable revelations or strategies to implement in your daily life and enhancing the impact of each therapy session.

5. Complete the task given by your therapist

Completing the tasks or exercises provided by your therapist at intervals between sessions is an important aspect of getting the most benefit from therapy. Homework assigned by your therapist may include journaling, self-reflection, or practicing specific exercises to reinforce what you learned in the sessions. But you may wonder what to get out of therapy. Well, engaging in these activities between sessions increases your progress and consolidates the work done during your therapy sessions.

Complete the task given by your therapist

6. Do the paperwork first

Start your therapy session by taking care of administrative tasks and paperwork first. Handling billing, updating insurance information, or signing necessary forms at the beginning allows you to dedicate the majority of your session to the meaningful work and discussions that contribute to your progress and growth in therapy.

7. Practice self-care

Self-care is an important element in your overall well-being, especially when you engage in therapy. It includes various exercises that contribute to a healthy and balanced lifestyle. During therapy, don't overlook the impact of self-care, which may include regular exercise, maintaining a nutritious diet, pursuing hobbies or interests, practicing meditation, spending quality time with loved ones, and ensuring adequate and consistent sleep habits. These self-care activities can complement and enhance the benefits of your therapeutic visit, aiding your overall mental and emotional health.

8. Understand your expectations

When you begin your first therapy, it's helpful to be realistic about what you expect. Therapy is not a magical cure, but a process that takes time. Understand that progress may not always be linear, and setbacks may occur. Being patient with yourself and the therapy process can help you get the most out of each session.

understand your expectations

9. Trust the process

Patience is important in personal therapy. Once you find a therapist you trust and with whom you feel a connection, give it time to make an impact in your life. Remember, healing is a gradual journey and will not happen suddenly, but with sustained effort, progress is evident. Understand the importance of patience in achieving success. Therapy is not a straightforward path and this may involve revisiting topics several times, but the results will be worth the effort and time invested. Trust the process, and you'll see the benefits of your dedication and persistence.

10. Practice self-compassion

Being kind to yourself involves acknowledging your mistakes without being harsh or punishing yourself. Instead, approach the mistakes with a growth mindset, focusing on positive progress rather than dwelling on negative or unhealthy thought patterns. It's about practicing self-compassion and understanding that mistakes are part of your journey.

11. Prepare yourself for the session

Be present and ready for each session. Your willingness and active participation in therapy significantly impact its effectiveness. Bring a prepared mind, be open to discussion, and engage in the conversation during each session. So, this proactive strategy ensures that you get the maximum benefit from your therapy.

prepare yourself for the session

12. Stay consistent

Making a habit of following scheduled sessions ensures a consistent flow in your treatment, leading to more significant progress over time. Whether it's face-to-face or through online video sessions, maintaining regularity in your appointments helps foster trust between you and your therapist. This trust nurtures deep conversations and insights that can lead to lasting results even after your therapy sessions have ended.

13. Enjoy the experience

Are you wondering how to get the most out of therapy? One of the crucial therapy tips is finding joy in the process. Simply relish the opportunity to express your thoughts and feelings openly. It's a significant step toward progress. Celebrate the little victories and the courage it took you to share your story, thoughts, and feelings.

enjoy the experience

14. Appreciate yourself

Acknowledging your progress is as important as discussing the challenges you face. This practice motivates you to keep moving forward, even if you face occasional setbacks along the way. Celebrate the steps you've taken and the growth you've experienced as part of your journey toward wellness.

15. Seek support

Are you in the quest for how to get the most out of therapy? In this matter, building a robust support network can be invaluable. Having people in your life who are willing to listen and provide guidance can be a significant asset. This network becomes particularly valuable during moments of overwhelm or uncertainty about the next steps. Reach out to friends, family, or trusted individuals when you need a listening ear or guidance on your journey towards better mental health.

seek support

What to Do If You’re Not Getting the Most Out of Therapy Sessions

If you sense that your therapy progress has hit a roadblock or isn't effective, the first step is to discuss this with your therapist. They might consider altering their approach or providing additional activities or tasks to enhance your progress. If things still don't improve, it could be that you and your therapist aren't the best match, and that's okay.

Occasionally, personalities don’t quite connect. In such cases, don’t be afraid to seek a new therapist who's a better fit. Even if you transition to a new therapist, the work you've done in your prior sessions can still be valuable. Therapy isn't always a straightforward journey, and its effectiveness is often proportional to the effort you invest in it.

So, download the Now&Me app and reap the benefits of the therapy to the fullest.

Further reading

How Does Therapy Actually Work?

6 Common Myths About Online Therapy with Now&Me

Your Guide for Your First Therapy Session

“We All Should Take Therapy”, But Why? Find Out Now!

5 Best Therapies That Can Reduce Your Anxiety


To understand how to get the most out of therapy, ensure you're ready and actively involved. Reflect on what you want to discuss beforehand, setting clear goals you wish to address. Actively participate by being open and honest, discussing challenges, and contributing to the conversation. Follow through on any tasks or homework your therapist suggests between sessions to maintain momentum and progress.

Therapists often take notes after sessions to get the most out of therapy. These notes help them keep track of your progress, the details discussed, and your treatment plans. However, the extent and type of notes may vary among therapists based on their preferences, the therapeutic method used, or even legal requirements. The content of these notes typically remains confidential and stored securely in compliance with healthcare laws.

Making the most of counseling involves active engagement and communication. Openly discuss your concerns, be committed to change, and actively participate in your treatment plan. Completing any assigned tasks or homework between sessions can significantly contribute to progress. Moreover, maintaining consistency and attending sessions regularly aid in reaping the full benefits of counseling.

The goals of therapy can be highly personal and diverse. Some may seek relief from specific symptoms, while others aim for personal growth or improved coping mechanisms. It's crucial to identify what you want to achieve. Reflect on your goals, whether it's reduced anxiety, better communication, improved relationships, or finding coping strategies. These goals serve as the foundation for your therapy journey and guide your progress.

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