Choosing a therapist is not easy. The best thing to do is set up your first meeting or two and see if you have a good fit with the therapist. Do you like her or him?
These are 9 qualities you are looking for in a therapist plus things to ask:
1. They must be licensed by the BBS in California and treat only issues they are qualified to treat.
2. They should be open to questions inquiring about their experience and their orientation towards counseling.
3. Do they seem genuine?
4. Is she/he a good listener?
5. Does he/she have firm boundaries in place for your safety?
6. Do you like a therapist who listens mostly while you talk or one who interjects and gives you tools to use outside of therapy?
7. Is the therapist working towards your goals or their own?
8. Does your therapist force you to talk about things you don’t feel ready or want to talk about?
9. A therapist should not tell you what to do. You must live with the consequences. A therapist should share information but leave the final choice to the patient.
Mostly, trust your gut. If it doesn’t feel right, it probably isn’t right for you. Find another one! There are many to choose from!