What to Expect on my First Therapy Session?

At Mindset Counseling Center, we emphasize the collaborative nature of the initial session. Our therapists provide empathetic support to help assess compatibility and establish a plan for future sessions. Open conversations about your emotions are encouraged if you feel any uneasiness or uncertainty. This allows exploration of whether our therapist’s approach aligns with your unique needs and preferences.


What Does Starting Therapy Sessions Look Like?

The first therapy session, often referred to as an initial or intake session, is a crucial step in establishing a therapeutic relationship. While the specifics may vary depending on the therapist and therapeutic approach, here are some common elements you can generally expect during your initial therapy session:

1. Introduction and Paperwork

The therapist will introduce themselves and provide an overview of the therapeutic process. You may be asked to fill out some paperwork, which can include forms related to confidentiality, informed consent, and a brief questionnaire about your background and current concerns.

2. Establishing Rapport

The therapist will aim to create a comfortable and non-judgmental atmosphere. They may ask about your preferences for the session, such as seating arrangements and any specific needs you have.

3. Discussion of Goals and Expectations

You’ll have the opportunity to discuss your reasons for seeking therapy, your goals, and what you hope to achieve. The therapist may ask questions to better understand your current situation, emotions, and challenges.

4. Overview of Therapeutic Approach

The therapist may provide information about their therapeutic approach, the techniques they use, and what you can expect from the therapy process. This is a chance for you to ask questions and ensure that you feel comfortable with the approach.

5. Assessment

The therapist may conduct a brief assessment to gather more information about your mental health, history, and current circumstances. This helps in formulating a more comprehensive understanding of your needs.

6. Exploration of Previous Therapy Experiences

If you’ve had previous therapy, the therapist might inquire about your experiences to understand what has and hasn’t worked for you in the past.

7. Confidentiality and Boundaries

The therapist will explain the limits of confidentiality and discuss any circumstances under which they might need to break confidentiality, such as if there is a risk of harm to yourself or others.

8. Questions and Clarifications

You are encouraged to ask questions about the therapeutic process, the therapist’s qualifications, or any concerns you may have. Open communication is vital for a successful therapeutic relationship.

Next Steps

Towards the end of the session, the therapist may discuss the frequency of sessions, potential duration of therapy, and what the next steps in the therapeutic process will look like.

Remember that the initial session is a collaborative process, and the therapist is there to support you. It’s an opportunity for both you and the therapist to determine if you are a good fit for each other and to outline a plan for future sessions. If you feel uneasy or uncertain, it’s okay to discuss your feelings with the therapist and explore whether their approach aligns with your needs and preferences. 

What Our Clients Are Saying

"My counselor really cares about me. She listens to all my concerns and then directs me through each piece of my concerns helping me cope with or move through. I would highly recommend her for your needs too."

" From the first meeting I knew she was the right fit for me and that I would be in good hands. "

" I highly recommend Carolena; if you want a genuine therapist who helps you set the goals you want to achieve and goes out of her way to ensure you hit them."

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