Your Guide for Your First Therapy Session

Ilma Haider

25 June 2022

7 Mins

Since you have put in all the hard work to find a therapist, made an appointment, and figured out how you will pay for it, now is the right time to discuss and understand why and how your first therapy session will help you.

Mental health is not comprehended by most people. Understanding and focusing on mental problems and disorders and how to fix them keeps people alive. So, therapy helps us develop our personality with emotional intelligence and focused skills.

Therapy is not the same as sharing your problems with your best friend. We know your friends may be able to provide you with emotional support and offer sound advice, but they do not have the proper skills to navigate your emotions and fix problematic behaviours.

Your first therapy session will be the hardest; it won’t be a friendly conversation or a short one. Therapy can help you feel less stressed and happier, but getting there won’t be easy. Learning to be self-aware and facing your challenges will help you grow and change into a better person. A well-trained professional will protect your confidentiality and patiently listens to you. So, if you discover someone well, you can finish your first therapy session with a good cup of tea!

But where do you start?

Why might therapy be the best decision for you?

Your desired and hassle-free dream experience can also become stressful if you don’t know why and how to prepare for your first therapy session. So we have put together some tips and reasons why therapy may be the best decision for you.

Why might therapy be the best decision for you

1. It helps you channel the best of your personality

Personality development is developing various positive and attractive aspects to improve our image. The best way to develop your personality is to start giving importance and dedication to your everyday tasks. Mental health problems can make us feel little, but with the right therapy programs, you can focus on your development more.

2. Helps find the root causes

Most people who are new to therapy may feel feelings of depression and anxiousness or can at times feel overwhelmed by emotions. Mental health problems such as depression and anxiety or ADHD don’t improve on their own. Posttraumatic stress disorder, which usually includes an element of these, is common. The last stop for people suffering from mental issues is therapy.

3. Channelize emotions better

Therapy is an exploration of thoughts and feelings to understand better and manage them. So, yes, in your first consultation, your emotions will play a huge part. Therapy helps with understanding your emotions and managing them and heals the ones preventing you from fully embracing life.

4. Better future decisions

A therapist can systematically help you go through your process of reaching a decision. They won’t decide for you, but they will help you examine the problem from as many angles as possible to think through the possible results of each option. If you are new to therapy, ask questions that help you to see the issue more clearly and completely, and also, it will help you clarify your most desired outcome.

5. Tackling feelings of isolation

There is a difference between being lonely and being in solitude alone. Being humans, we are wired to be social, and sometimes even if people surround you, you may still feel emotionally lonely. This can cause negative thoughts. But only after your first therapy session you may start to feel comfortable, and feelings of separation and stress may disappear.

6. Mindfulness for the future

Mindfulness is the practice of being present in the moment, connecting to your physical sensations, and allowing your physical, emotional, and mental experiences to be what it is without judgment or pressure to change. After your first therapy session, you may start to trust your therapist with your real feelings and emotions.

How to prepare for your first therapy session

How to prepare for your first therapy session

1. Understand why you need therapy

If you are someone who suffers from anxiety attacks and breakdowns, therapy might be the only thing that calms you down. So, just because you think therapy may be uncomfortable or unfamiliar, you shouldn't ignore it. There can be many reasons why you need therapy.

  • Self-awareness: So many of us are critical of our emotions, problems, actions, and comforts. With the help of therapy, you can work through your toxic behavioural patterns and become a better person. After your first therapy session, it's an insightful road to happiness and making better choices.

  • Everybody needs therapy: Let us break the myth that “weak people go to therapy.” The opposite is true. Weak people hide from their problems, and the strong ones confront them. Being reflective and expressing your emotions are very important. If you are new to therapy, make yourself vulnerable to your therapist to see the long-term benefits.

  • Grief, loss and anxiety: People who suffer from anxiety-related disorders know that it can affect their emotions and behaviours anytime. For example, grief and loss can cause a person to have sudden mood changes and distress. This is why you have to try your first therapy session to remove stressful feelings from your mind.

2. Research different types of therapy

The best way to manage anxiety, depression, or any other mental health problem is by seeking therapy. For newbies, it can feel difficult, but with different approaches and time, you will feel better.

  • Cognitive-behavioural therapy: CBT is a short-term but goal-oriented therapy. It focuses on the link between our thoughts and behaviours. Long-term effects can help change unproductive behaviours.

  • Psychodynamic therapy: This therapy focuses on how certain life events and relationships can affect our current emotions. It helps us acknowledge our negative feelings. This approach is popular for people with depression.

  • Experiential therapy: Unlike the other two, experiential therapy focuses on a person's nature rather than collective behaviours. This therapy focuses on a person's positive spirit, emotions, and self-exploration.

3. Make a list of your problems

The reasons behind seeking therapy are many—mental health problems such as depression or anxiety, addiction, illnesses, loss, etc. So when you attend your first therapy session with your therapist, remember to talk openly about your problems.

4. Source the right therapist

Maybe for you, it may not be easy at first to find the right therapist that will work to improve whatever you are struggling with. But it's never impossible. The internet has thousands of therapist options, and if you want, it also teaches you how to talk to a therapist for the first time (You don't have to worry about anything). Technology has also made it possible for mental health professionals to connect over virtual modes these days

5. Be honest with your therapist

Honesty is the best policy, especially when it comes to our mental health.

  • Why should a person be completely honest with their therapist? Honest information will help the therapist find easier and more straight therapy options.
  • What to talk about in the first therapy session? The best way to start the conversation is by introducing yourself, your hobbies, likes, and dislikes.
  • What if your therapist shares your information with someone? Do not worry. Mental health professionals, especially therapists, will keep your confidential information with them by oath.

6. Don’t set unrealistic expectations

Another essential thing to remember is not to set unrealistic expectations about your medical professional and their ways. After your first therapy session, you may think things will start to get better in an instant. It is not true. Healing problems take time, especially mental health problems. So sit back, and relax! Things will take time, but the result will be worth the wait!

7. Monitor your progress

As we said above, therapy takes time. It is a slow process. Do not rush it. The best thing to do is to watch your emotions, feelings, and mood from the first consultation to the last. The change will be a little slow, but it will be there.


1. What are the types of therapy?

Therapy can help people deal with their problems by teaching coping skills to eliminate the issue. There are many types of therapy. Cognitive behaviour therapy focuses on the client's problem or thought rather than the client itself. Psychodynamic therapy: explores unconscious feelings and thoughts and the impacts of the past and present. Behavioural therapy: focuses on the behaviour and the reason for the behaviour in the client.

2. How does therapy help you?

Therapy helps clients by providing a new, healthier perspective on one's self and a corrective emotional experience. For example, when clients come with problems of anxiety, depression, or childhood trauma, they are likely "stuck" in a pattern that's not working. Trained professionals help them see the limitations of that belief and help them learn new ways of coping with life's stresses and future unknowns.

3. What is the average cost of therapy?

The average cost of not undergoing treatment is far more than being treated. The cost of medications will vary depending on the type of medication, dosage, frequency, etc. Regarding therapy also, the cost may vary depending on the city and therapist, the number of sessions, the type of therapy, etc.

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