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
11 Easy Ways To Actually Love Yourself More
Jan 24, 2016
Jordan Gray
11 Easy Ways To Actually Love Yourself More
You hear the advice of "love yourself first" from so many sources throughout your life. But what does that actually mean? While I think that it's wrong/damaging/ridiculous to tell people that they can't be loved by others until they love themselves (*ahem*... of course you can... you not loving...
Continue Reading
3 Questions to Ask Yourself on Your Deathbed
May 4, 2013
Jordan Gray
3 Questions to Ask Yourself on Your Deathbed
I'm lying near the peak of a mountain in Lombok, Indonesia. My legs, arms, and chest muscles have been shaking violently for the past twenty minutes. I have lost all feeling in my hands and chest. I'm having trouble breathing. And my vision becomes increasingly distorted by the second. "Are you still...
Continue Reading
Love Them In A Way That Makes Them More Free
Jan 11, 2019
Jordan Gray
Love Them In A Way That Makes Them More Free
The majority of modern relationships are based off of fear. Marriages that are more about possessiveness than about love. Unspoken codependent social contracts abound. Jealousy, game playing, and manipulation are more the default than the exception. So, if trying to possess or control someone is the...
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
6 Simple Steps To Ruin A Relationship
Feb 25, 2014
Jordan Gray
6 Simple Steps To Ruin A Relationship
You've seen them… Walking down the street hand in hand… gazing lovingly at each other… ridiculously large smiles plastered across their face... That's right… I'm talking about happy couples. How revolting. Make sure you never become like those people by following these six simple steps to...
Continue Reading
The Surest Way To Become A Better Person
Oct 6, 2017
Jordan Gray
The Surest Way To Become A Better Person
Want to become a bigger, better person in the world? Take on more responsibility. As human beings, we all crave a deep sense of meaning. And our sense of meaning often comes down to the amount of responsibility we have taken on in our lives. So if you want to grow as a person, find...
Continue Reading