Oct 20, 2018

Does Therapy Even Work?

Does therapy actually work or is it just a bunch of hoity-toity bullshit for rich people who want to complain to a stranger about their problems?

Myths and stereotypes abound about talk-based therapy.

People think that therapists ‘shrink’ heads. Or that therapy clients are simply ‘navel-gazing’.

But does sitting down and talking to someone actually move your life forwards, or is it just self-absorption masking as self-development?

What Does Therapy Actually Do For People?

I am of the belief that life will eventually humble you and give you the lessons that you need to learn within your lifetime.

Are you supremely arrogant? Life will teach you humility.

Are you overly selfish and self-centred? Life will teach you compassion, empathy, and awareness of others.

Are you perpetually putting others needs before your own? Life will teach you to step into your power and make your needs a priority.

But, while I believe that your lessons are inevitable and they will come your way in time, I also believe that therapy is a way of earning your way into these higher states of existence sooner, rather than later.

In other words, you can shave years (if not several decades) off of your learning curve by having someone be a potent mirror to you and give you valuable reflections that you might not have come across until your later years in life. These little interventions are achieved by someone (who lives outside of your mind) giving you potent reflections regarding blind spots that you wouldn’t have been aware of otherwise.

So speed of integration of your life’s lessons (how soon it happens) is one major benefit of therapy, and the second most important is a question of dynamic range (or how much you change over time with your newfound self-awareness).

Let me draw an analogy (both literally and figuratively) that will better explain this concept…

Whenever I release an article on my website that I am especially proud of, I occasionally pay for a ‘boost’ on my Facebook fan page in order to give the article extra reach. Why would I do this? Because the total impact of the article (in terms of world-wide readership) is exponentially different when I give the beginning just a little bit of a boost.

It’s the same with seeing a therapist, doing group therapy, or any other kind of reputable deep inner work in your life.

The results that you see in the future are exponentially greater because you have the increased self-awareness, character, and greater toolkit of emotional resilience than you would have if you had never slowed down to spend some time working with and being aware of your patterns and your mind.

Now, when I say reputable, that is an important element in this whole debate.

There are countless therapists, coaches, counsellors, etc. who are ineffective (and often damaging).

I once had a client tell me (after our single coaching session regarding his intermittent erectile dysfunction) that I had been more helpful to him than dozens of sessions that he did with a licensed sex therapist who more or less told him that he would have this problem forever and there was very little he could do about it (he wasn’t inspired by this feedback, to say the least). Of course this isn’t to say that all sex therapists are ineffective (not at all – I know some truly gifted providers), but that the range of quality among different therapists is vast.

There is no tried and true method to figuring out who is amazing and who isn’t before doing a session with them, but a good rule of thumb is to either 1) ask people you respect for referrals, or 2) to look at the service providers testimonials and see if the transformations of the people that they have worked with are similar to what you are going through.

Final note on this: if a therapist/coach/counsellor ever tells you that they can “fix you”, run in the other direction. It is not a therapists job to fix you, but merely to help you to fix yourself. Fix is a crude word to use (help you to integrate would be more appropriate), but the word choice is intentional in this instance because some younger, more inexperienced therapists can get a bit of a god-complex and believe that they are the ones doing the healing for the client.

Does Therapy Work For Everyone?

Is talk-based therapy a silver bullet that works for everyone? Of course not. But it’s the closest thing to one for most people that I’ve ever seen and utilized.

The simple value that is derived from allowing yourself to be seen, allowing your pain to be heard, witnessed, and received, and the emotional freedom that results from you moving forward in your life with a more robust and dynamic sense of self, is immense and incalculable.

Dedicated to your success,

Jordan

Ps. If you enjoyed reading this article, you will likely also love:

How To Fully Release Difficult Emotions That Hold You Back

All Of Your Suffering Was Worth It

11 Easy Ways To Actually Love Yourself More

What The Most Compassionate People All Have In Common

How To Manage Stress (Or How I Effectively Weathered My Shit Storm Of A Year)

Blog

Related

See All
Own The Part Of You That Wants To Remain A Child Forever
Feb 24, 2020
Jordan Gray
Own The Part Of You That Wants To Remain A Child Forever
There is a part in all of us that wants to remain a child forever. Chopping the food and tending the fire brings its own satisfaction... but a part of us just wants the resulting warmth, without all of the effort. Wouldn't it be nice to have your dream relationship run on autopilot... without having...
Continue Reading
How To Find And Date An Exceptionally High Quality Partner
Sep 13, 2015
Jordan Gray
How To Find And Date An Exceptionally High Quality Partner
Looking to find and date a high quality partner? You're in luck! I recently wrote a piece over on Elephant Journal called “Marry A Man Who Knows How To Love Hard.” I described a man who is there for all of the inevitable what-if’s of life… who lovingly listens to how his partner’s day went… and who...
Continue Reading
You Can Not Heal On Your Own
Jan 23, 2017
Jordan Gray
You Can Not Heal On Your Own
Western society lives by the culturally imposed rules of ‘The Cult Of One’. We are constantly bombarded with messages of “Go it alone”… “Be all that YOU can be”… “Never let ‘em see you sweat”… “When you laugh the world laughs with you, when you cry, you cry alone.” The underlying message being that...
Continue Reading
New Relationship? Here Are 5 Ways To Overcome Your Anxiety
Mar 4, 2018
Jordan Gray
New Relationship? Here Are 5 Ways To Overcome Your Anxiety
One of the most common questions that I get on a weekly basis is... "I'm in a new relationship and I feel a low level state of anxiety basically 24/7. Am I normal!? Will this ever end? Should I listen to my anxiety and run, or hunker down and stick it out?" Many a new relationship...
Continue Reading
The 3 Best Questions You Could Ever Ask Your Partner
May 16, 2015
Jordan Gray
The 3 Best Questions You Could Ever Ask Your Partner
One of the worst things that we do in our intimate relationships is make assumptions. We assume that our partners receive love in the same manner that we do. We assume that our partners expect the same things from marriage. We assume that our partner defines monogamy the same as we do. The assumptions...
Continue Reading
How To Put On Muscle (For Skinny Guys)
Dec 9, 2019
Jordan Gray
How To Put On Muscle (For Skinny Guys)
Want to have the healthiest and most capable body of your entire life? Want to get so thick… so swole… so yoked… that people get whiplash as they walk by you from double-taking so hard? Want to learn how to have such crazy-huge, bulging muscles, that you can easily lift a two-tonne car with your bare...
Continue Reading