What makes a good therapist? Answering this million-dollar question is not easy! After all, defining a good psychotherapist is as subjective as it gets since it is not a one-size-fits-all approach in this field. What works for you may not work for someone else and vice versa. Yet, there are still some universal qualities of a therapist that can be highlighted here. Remember to take your time while choosing your therapist since the decision will eventually impact your mental health and development in the future.
What makes a good psychologist or psychotherapist? Finding the answers
Here are some qualities of a psychologist or psychotherapist that you should look for-
- An effective therapist will always be a good communicator- Communication is the biggest skill and possibly the foundation of this profession. Effective psychotherapists should have good communication skills, expertly sensing what you are getting at and displaying warmth, empathy and acceptance in response.
- He or she will always be a good listener- The ability to listen to the client is what you should also look for. A good psychotherapist will always be a good listener, giving you the time, space and ambience to express your thoughts and feelings. Before giving an opinion or counselling you, your psychotherapist should want to learn more about you, what you are feeling and what you wish to resolve or get off your chest for that matter.
- The ability to provide explanations- Good therapists should be able to explain the symptoms that you are facing and subsequently broaden the same with circumstantial changes. Clients always wish to know the reasons for specific symptoms and occurrences and psychotherapists should be able to explain the scientific or logical reasons behind the same.
- Good psychotherapists remain committed to establishing treatment plans- Whenever you meet an effective psychotherapist, watch out for vague plans of action. A thorough professional will always commit to developing a treatment plan with milestones marked for progress.
- Authenticity always matters- When you go to a therapist, you do not automatically expect him or her to have all the answers. What you should look for is a sense of honesty and authenticity. A good psychotherapist should be able to tell you when he or she needs more time to understand your symptoms or feelings or explain something to you. This means that they are willing to put in the effort and also that they are honest enough to admit when they need more time.
- Building trust is what counts- In the world of therapy, building trust is what counts in the end. The psychotherapist should be able to put you at ease instantly while being a good observer and listener. You should feel that sense of comfort and trust, enabling you to further open up to the person. Understanding this aspect is completely subjective, so trust your gut.
These are the top six qualities that you should assess while choosing your psychotherapist.