When choosing a counselor, it’s important to be sure you are working with a licensed professional in good standing. You can check to see if there have been any complaints filed against an LPC’s license through the Texas Department of Health and Human Services.
It’s also important to follow your instincts. Trust and a strong relationship are critical elements in counseling. Think about the following questions when you contact a potential counselor. How do you feel when talking with him or her? Do you feel heard? Respected? Understood? Do you feel comfortable asking questions? If you answered no to any of these questions, do you feel comfortable talking with him or her about why you felt this way? If not, you may want to keep looking.
When choosing a counselor, it may help to ask the following questions:
How do you believe people change?
Do you assign “homework”?
How do you track whether or not we’re making progress?
What happens if I feel we’re not making progress?
How will we know when our work together is done?
Once you’ve found a counselor you feel comfortable with, you can achieve your goals more quickly by committing to the process. Commitment to the process includes keeping appointments and arriving on time. It also includes being open to suggestions and homework assignments. Most importantly, it requires a willingness to share your feelings and opinions with your counselor, especially if something becomes uncomfortable or you feel you’re not making progress.