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why therapy isn't working

Maybe you've been to therapy before and figured "it's just not for me", or maybe you are currently in therapy and don't notice any changes. There are so many reasons as to why therapy might not seem like it's working, so here is a breakdown of some of those reasons and what you can do about it:

  1. Not the right fit

You and your therapist may not be the right fit for each other. Therapists all take different approaches, and the therapeutic relationship is one of the, if not THE most crucial piece to therapy. This doesn't mean your therapist was "bad" or that "therapy isn't for you", it simply means you may need to move on and find the one that clicks with you or communicate what you need more of from your therapist.

2. You aren't doing the work

This one may be difficult to hear, but sometimes people go to therapy thinking that's all they need to do in order to heal or feel better. If someone prints you off a workout plan and tells you exactly what to do, it's still up to you to execute. The same principle applies for therapy - your therapist can give you the tools, and work through issues with you during sessions, but ultimately it is up to you as the client to practice what you've discussed and learned in your sessions.

3. The change is subtle

Research shows it takes an average of 20 consistent sessions for change to occur. This can of course vary depending on the issue or issues at hand. I always encourage my clients to start seeing their therapist weekly to begin and then spread it out overtime. This helps to establish the therapeutic relationship and creates consistency, which is crucial for change. In addition to this, change is often very subtle. As a therapist, I typically do check ins with my clients after 10 or so consistent sessions where we check back in on the main issue that brought them into therapy. They usually forgot what that main issue was, or that's the moment they realize it's not a main issue for them anymore. Change is subtle, but when you are doing the work and communicating to your therapist what you need, it comes about!


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