Counseling improves your life more ways than you can imagine. Just think about the arguments you have with loved ones. Are you bickering over the same things for years and don’t know how to stop? What about communicating your needs? How good are you at telling others how you feel and what you want? Do you worry about a child’s behavior? What about your relationships at work? Are you stressed and overwhelmed? These are only a few of the reasons even the happiest among us need help to negotiate the complicated feelings and conflicts of life. After the devastating experiences of the Covid 19 year, people are even more vulnerable to emotional problems of all kinds. What can you do about it?

The first step to resolving your issues is being aware that you need more than a trusted friend of family member to help. Why? Friends have biases, counselors don’t take sides or stop you from telling the truth as you see it. Professional counselors provide a safe place to talk as well as the tools you need to really improve you life. Where do you go for help and how do you choose the person who’s perfect for your needs? You can find counseling services on hcbh.org. Here are five ways counseling helps.

1. Manage stress to improve mental and overall health

The demands of work, finances, familial obligations, and relationships feel overwhelming. Counseling can help reduce your stress by learning to let go of the things you can’t change and shouldn’t worry about. There are plenty of helpful ways to manage and reduce stress.

Some helpful techniques to manage stress include

  • Getting enough rest. Do you sleep well at night?
  • Are you drinking too much? Cutting down on alcohol is great for stress management.
  • Food can help your mood. What are mood foods for energy and healing?
  • Laughing and having pleasures that nourish you. This can be games, gardening, or just relaxing outdoors.

2. Counseling improves your life when you Identify patterns of conflict and stop the arguing

Many families and couples argue over the same things for decades. These repetitive arguments can be as trivial as who washes the dishes or walks the dog, or as serious as drinking too much, spending too much, or not parenting in the same style. Frustrations around these arguments make even simple discussions triggers for painful dramas. Many families are dysfunctional because of conflicts they can’t resolve alone. Counseling can cool the heated feelings and bring compassion and caring to people who really want to get along better.

Relationship counseling is not just for couples, kids and parents can also go through counseling together. Counseling is especially helpful for families in recovery from addiction or experience mental illness. People in recovery need help to change and support each other.

3. Improve communication skills

There are plenty of reasons communication is a problem in families, or at work. Your feelings may be getting in the way of healthy exchanges. Do you know how to effectively express your point of view without seeming overbearing or controlling? Some people can’t listen. Some people only listen to react and not to share. If there is a dominant or narcissistic family member in your life, you may have learned to hide your feelings. You may feel it’s not safe to express yourself.

Counseling can give you the skills you need to listen with compassion instead of anger. Counseling also helps you understand how your reactions may be fueling your conflicts. You don’t have to say everything you think, and you can learn to say what you mean without being mean.

Talking with a counselor can foster healthy ways of communication, and lessen the frustration of not understanding each other.

4. Have a safe place to open up and talk

Living in a dysfunctional families or relationship mean you aren’t safe to express your feelings and needs. You may be living in fear. Or you may want to protect someone who isn’t behaving well. You may be experiencing emotional or physical abuse. You can’t tell friends or family members. With a counselor, you can talk freely. You don’t need to hide anything. Counselors don’t judge you or to tell you what to do. Counselors provide that safe place for you to examine what’s happening and plan ways for you to o make healthier decisions.

5. Counseling improves your life by giving you new insight

A counselor enables you to develop a fresh insight on life. This means that you’ll learn to value and nurture your life as it is. For instance, if you’ve always seen yourself through a dark and negative pair of eyes, a counselor can help you see the light at the end of the tunnel.

On the other hand, a counselor can also advise if you can indeed benefit from a life-changing event. This could mean moving to a new city, getting a new job, or just generally getting a new start in life. Sometimes, it may be what your mental and emotional health needs.

Conclusion

Once you give counseling a try, you’ll find that there’s so much more for you to gain. Deciding to try out counseling isn’t an easy one, as it can also come with a hefty price per session. But like any other health-related expense, it’ll be worth it. 

When you’re mentally and emotionally healthy, you’re happier and more productive. And when you’re happier, you can be a better version of yourself—and you can start creating healthier and happier relationships.


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Leslie Glass

Leslie Glass became a recovery advocate and co-founder of Reach Out Recovery in 2011, encouraged by her daughter Lindsey who had struggled with substances as a teen and young adult. Learning how to manage the family disease of addiction with no roadmap to follow inspired the mother and daughter to create Reach Out Recovery's website to help others experiencing the same life-threatening problems. Together they produced the the 2016 ASAM Media Award winning documentary, The Secret World of Recovery, and the teen prevention documentary, The Silent Majority, distributed by American Public Television. In her career, Leslie has worked in advertising, publishing, and magazines as a writer of both fiction and non fiction. She is the author of 9 bestselling crime novels, featuring NYPD Dt.Sgt. April Woo. Leslie has has served as a Public Member of the Middle States Commission of Higher Education and as a Trustee of the New York City Police Foundation. For from 1990 to 2017, Leslie was the Trustee of the Leslie Glass Foundation. Leslie is a proud member of Rotary International.

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