“Shopping for therapist should be approached in the same way as looking for a new pair of shoes. They should FIT well, feel COMFORTABLE, and you should be HAPPY with their look and STYLE, or you will never feel completely satisfied.”
~Mary Jane Warr, Finding the Golden Key – Making Sense of Depression
If you live in the Phoenix, Arizona, area and are having emotional problems for which you feel the need to talk to a professional, you are lucky enough to have a plethora of choices. No matter what your particular issue is –trauma, anxiety, depression, relationship issues, emotional eating – you will find a qualified therapist.
But too many choices can also breed confusion – with so many options before you, which one is the right one for YOU? Trying to find the right therapist through trial-and-error can be expensive and take months. To make it easier, here are some helpful tips that can make your search for the right Phoenix therapist that much easier.
Start with the Resources You Already Have to Find the Right Therapist in Phoenix
Even if you think that you don’t even know where to begin to look for a therapist in Phoenix, you probably already have some resources that can at least point you in the right direction:
Your Insurance Company
–Thanks to the Affordable Health Care Act, you probably already have insurance. Contact your carrier to see which therapist and counselors in the Phoenix area are included as part of your coverage.
Your Employee Assistance Program (EAP)
–Many companies have a wellness program in place that provides confidential counseling and support for employees as part of the benefits package. You may be entitled to a limited number of free sessions, after which you can receive a referral for a local Phoenix therapist.
–Most schools have a Counseling Center as part of Student Affairs. As with an EAP, you can receive short-term assistance, and if you need ongoing counseling, you can be referred to a qualified and licensed mental health specialist in Phoenix.
Narrow Your Search in Arizona, but Don’t Limit Yourself
When you are looking through listings of therapists in Phoenix, you will most likely focus on those counselors who (a) specialize in your specific issue, and (b) are close to where you live or work. That can be an efficient way to conduct your search, but don’t paint yourself into a corner. Keep an open mind.
Even though most therapists in Phoenix offer counseling for specific types of problems, many areas of practice overlap, and you might be able to get the help you need from unexpected sources. For example, if you are being troubled with low self-esteem and are having a hard time finding a therapist with an opening, perhaps a disordered eating counselor might be able to assist you, since often, the two conditions go hand-in-hand.
Also, it might be a good idea to expand your geographical boundaries a bit. If you limit yourself to only therapists in Phoenix, you might miss an excellent counselor in Glendale who would have been able to help you work through your issues.
Know What Questions to Ask Your Potential Therapist Near Phoenix
Many people feel uncomfortable asking their mental health professional any questions about their qualifications, experience, and expertise – but that’s exactly what you SHOULD do. For therapy to the effective, you have to have complete trust in your counselor, and you can’t have that trust if there are any lingering doubts or unanswered questions.
- Are you licensed in Arizona?
- How long have you been practicing?
- What are your areas of expertise?
- I’m here because of ____. How do you typically treat this problem?
- What are your success rates in dealing with this issue?
- Do you accept direct payment/billing from my insurance company?
How Does Your Therapist Make You Feel?
The right match between you and your therapist is extremely important. If at any point – the initial consultation or even after a few counseling sessions – you feel uncomfortable or that the “fit” isn’t right, don’t hesitate to say so.
Sometimes, the rapport just isn’t there. It’s not something that can be researched, and if you need to move on to another local Phoenix therapist, the professional you’ve been speaking with won’t take any offense. It is understood that for you to get better, you have to feel perfectly at ease with your mental health provider.
If you live in the Phoenix, Arizona, Metro area and need any type of counseling, the trained professionals at Empowerment Treatment & Counseling, located conveniently in Glendale, are ready to work with you to restore peace of mind and hope to your life.