Counselling and psychotherapy can help you to gain a deeper understanding of what is happening for you, how you are living, and what may be underlying difficulties that you are experiencing. Through exploration and reflection we can work together to deepen your self-knowledge, to empower you to make new choices, and to further develop your ability to tolerate and cope with life's challenges. Much of what supports change occurs in the therapy hour.
And much of it doesn't.
What we use as an adjunct to psychotherapy, how we support ourselves outside the therapy hour is at least as important. How we care for ourselves between sessions, how we nourish ourselves and challenge ourselves is another key to supporting our process of self-discovery.
Whether or not you are seeing a counsellor or psychotherapist, your mind and body need attention and support to function well.
So, how do you care for yourself? Do you have somewhere you love to go? Somewhere you feel connected and in tune with yourself and your environment? Somewhere that helps you to hear, and distance yourself from, your thoughts? Or maybe it is something you do. Maybe it is sport, art, writing, gardening, hillwalking, meditation, tai chi, mindfulness practice....or something else.
Do you make enough time in your life for something that nurtures you? And if not, could you think about what might be a nurturing practice for you and decide to give it a try. It doesn't have to be perfect, it doesn't have to be a formal practice, it doesn't have to be something out of a wellness manual, just something that nurtures and relaxes, or envigorates, you, without harming you.
And remember, it takes time to find what works. Very few people stumble upon what works for them as a self-care practice first time round. So be patient with yourself, try different things, don't get too caught up in right or wrong, experiment, and enjoy...