Online Counseling- How to make it work for you
Many people are seeking counseling to address the heightened stress and anxiety they are experiencing during the Covid19 Pandemic. As it remains unclear when it would be safe for most to start seeing a clinician in person, Tele Health has become a valuable tool for counseling.
Tele-Therapy, or Online Counseling isn’t a new concept, many groups were already offering this counseling service to clients in remote or rural areas. Typically, most people in need of counseling, prefer the privacy and connectedness that an office setting provides. However, present times dictate a different approach in getting the counseling help you need, now.
Make Your Online Counseling Experience the Best It Can Be
There are steps you can take to make your online counseling experience, a positive one.
Find a trusted provider
If you don’t already have a provider, find one that meets your needs. If you need guidance, we offer some additional tools in our blog post, “Ten Steps to Finding a Great Therapist”.
Ensure your privacy
Ensure your provider is offering securing, private Tele-Therapy. Your privacy is important. Speaking over an open line or using an online tool such as Zoom are not secure or HIPPA Compliant methods for counseling.
- Ensure you have a comfortable private area to speak to your clinician. An ideal area would offer privacy and a comfortable place to sit for an hour.
- Good lighting, you want to be seen as well as have a clear view of your clinician.
- Limitations on background noise.
- If your child is the client, make sure they have all these same needs met, but be accessible should they need your support during a session.
- Make sure the tool you plan to use whether that is a laptop, computer, iPad or telephone, has the appropriate links to your service.
- Download the appropriate apps required, (if any), BEFORE your session, not right as your session is about to start. You don’t want most of your session to be trouble shooting Tech. You need this time to speak to the heart of your concerns, not play Geek Squad.
- Ensure your device is fully charged or plugged into a working outlet.
- If using headphones (which we highly recommended for additional privacy) ensure they work. Call a friend or a colleague beforehand to ensure they can hear you and you them.
Whether you are seeing a counselor face to face or online, it is a good idea to journal your thoughts and concerns beforehand. Make note of any stressors you are currently experiencing or worries that are keeping you up at night. You can also make note of what you hope to accomplish through counseling. Perhaps you want a safe place to vent about your stressors. Or maybe you want to trouble shoot a specific problem in a relationship. Knowing how you would like counseling to benefit you, and sharing that with your clinician, is a great start.
Relax and Focus
Right before your session ensure you have your journal or notes and any other supplies for your comfort. Water, headphones, pen and paper if you want to write anything down. Allow yourself 10 minutes before your session to prepare in this way. The extra time will let you organize, sit, and be as relaxed as possible to ensure your experience is the best it can be.
Now, more than ever, it is critical to attend to both your mental health needs as well as those of your family members. There is no shame is seeking support and guidance. Most of us have never experienced anything like this in our lifetime. Knowing how to manage, how to cope, and how to make the best of our current scenarios, will require support.
Pace Counseling Group is a professional counseling firm located in San Antonio, Texas. We are focused on continuously improving the quality of life for our clients and their families. We are currently accepting new clients with no wait list. Insurance accepted. Make your first appointment online by clicking here.
To learn more, visit us at Pace Counseling Group or call (210) 481-3727.