An Introduction: Why Access Counselling?
Counselling can feel like a daunting undertaking; with the stigma surrounding mental health in our society, it is often a commitment kept in secret, not openly discussed or sought after. There can be a prevailing sentiment of, ‘I don’t need counselling because I don’t have a mental health diagnosis’.
People access counselling for a myriad of reasons; whether to strengthen the relationships they already have, heal past traumas, address instances of abuse, engage in self-exploration, etc. At different points in our lives, we can all use extra support and a safe, confidential place to engage and be heard. The unique nature of counselling is that it is with someone who doesn’t know you outside the counselling space. There is thus a degree of distance, which allows for expression and acceptance.
Rather than seeing counselling and mental health as something to be ashamed of, or something to keep hidden, hopefully, we can work to change the way in which we view mental health, focusing on overall health, including emotional wellbeing. By encouraging people to reach out for support when they find themselves struggling at different, difficult seasons in life, or by creating space for people to invest in enriching the relationship with themselves and those around them during seasons of life where they are feeling more settled and resourced – and thus more emotionally able to engage in deeper work – hopefully we can lay the foundations for a more open approach to our mental health.