Tips for Maximizing Your Benefits

 

You never know how strong you are, until being strong is your only choice.

Bob Marley

Knowledge

The more knowledge you have, the more intentionally you can act.  Be open to considering any and all information that can have a positive impact on your concerns.  Ask those you trust for their opinions, and give thought to any opinions that are offered to you.  Do supplemental reading and remain open to ideas that challenge you to examine your life in new ways.

And in the end, it’s not the years in your life that count.  It’s the life in your years.

Abraham Lincoln

Communication

Online communication is inherently limited by a lack of nonverbal communication.  I will need to directly inquire about any information I may  be missing about your emotional state, and I encourage you to be as forthcoming as possible about the emotions that you are experiencing.  You are welcome to use e-mail lingo and emoticons if you like.  Ideally, communicate in ways that feel the most natural for you.  Take your time responding, and never hesitate to ask questions, clarify my meaning, and correct me if I am wrong.

The tragedy of life is not that it ends so soon, but that we wait so long to begin it.

W. M. Lewis

Customize

If there is a psychological theory that interests you please let me know.  As long as I don’t find it harmful or unscientific, I will familiarize myself with it.  Are there any particular sayings, songs, or quotes that appeal to you?  Are there any religious, spiritual, cultural, or political values that provide foundations for you to stand on?

We cannot become what we need to be by remaining what we are.

Max Dupree

Project Status

Improving your life requires both intent and action, therefore, the more you put into this process, the more you will get out of it.  Consider what you can do in addition to your therapy e-mails to enhance your progress.  Pay attention to your positive and negative thoughts/beliefs, feelings, and behaviours, when they tend to occur, and note if they tend to make things better or worse for you.  Reflect on how your past may be affecting your present.  Journal, do supplemental reading and homework recommendations, pay attention to your daydreams, dreams, etcetera.  Make a conscious effort to focus your attention on the positive things you intend for yourself.  Save your therapy e-mails and re-read them occasionally to chart your progress and consolidate your gains.  It can be particularly helpful to review your previous therapy e-mail prior to responding to your current therapy e-mail.  Commit to your therapy for an adequate period of time.

Keep in mind that not only is therapy about improving the way you relate to your world, it is also about improving the way you relate to yourself.  Move at a pace that you’re comfortable with – be careful not to overwhelm yourself, but be mindful to not underestimate yourself as well.  And be patient.  Habits of mind and behaviour have taken years to take form and may not be undone overnight.

The best thing about the future is that it only comes one day at a time.

Abraham Lincoln