What To Expect In Your First Counselling Session
Updated: Jun 11
Scheduling your first therapy session can be tough. Having the courage to admit that you may need a bit of help, coupled with the self-awareness to recognise it in the first place is no small achievement, so if you’ve arranged your first session already, be proud of yourself for doing so.
If you haven’t sent that email just yet, try and remember that there is nothing to fear here and everything to gain.
When it comes to attending that first session, it can feel daunting so hopefully this article helps to explain a little bit about what to expect. Before the Session We will have spoken either via email or telephone at the point in which you enquired in order to arrange a time for our first initial session. Because I want to ensure you feel like I am the right fit for you as a therapist, I only charge £20 for this. The payment must be made via BACS prior to the session starting. Shortly before our scheduled time to meet, I will send you a Zoom link to your email address, as this is the platform I use for sessions. Please remember to check your Junk folder just in case those pesky spam filters have placed it in there by mistake. You don't need to bring anything with you to this session, but you may want to ensure you have a bit of time beforehand just to find a quiet space and get yourself comfortable. During the Session This initial session tends to incorporate three main elements:
It's a chance for me as the counsellor to properly introduce myself to you and to make sure you are feeling comfortable about the process.
It's also an opportunity for me to run through the 'counselling contract' to make sure you understand and are happy with the details of the counselling agreement between us both. This involves information on things like the confidentiality policy, working styles, cancellation policy and payment terms.
It is a chance for you to start telling me a bit about your story and the challenges you are experiencing, as well as any goals and/or expectations for therapy you might have. I might ask quite a few questions in our first session just to aid the process of me getting to know you, however, please remember that there is absolutely no pressure to share anything that you don't feel comfortable doing so. These sessions are a completely non judgemental space, and there is no 'right' or 'wrong' way of doing things.
After the Session This first therapy session might be emotionally draining, even if you don’t initially expect it to be. Therapy can involve unearthing many things your brain has worked hard to bury — the painful memories and feelings you may not have been up to exploring on your own. And as you sit down for first-time therapy, you may find the floodgates opening… whether you mean them to or not. This might not be the case, but it is important to be aware that it's a possibility, so my advice is to not schedule anything too demanding immediately after your first session!
If you are looking to try counselling but you still need to schedule your first appointment, click here to fill out my contact form