July 07, 2015

Is it time to consider counseling?

Source: NYSUT Social Services

Is it time to consider counseling?

We all experience difficult and stressful times in our lives and often can cope and manage them effectively. However depending on what resource is available to us at any given time and the rate at which stress builds, there will be times when one feels overwhelmed. This compromises our ability to function.

Many people have fears about reaching out for help due to stigma or judgment about one’s ability to manage their lives especially when it involves mental health. Deciding to get counseling does not necessarily mean that you have a mental illness. It often just means you need assistance in viewing your situation in an alternative way to increase your options for problem solving.

When someone is going through a difficult time it is often confusing and overwhelming to develop a plan. The following are just a few guidelines that one can use to determine if counseling should be considered either for yourself or your loved one.

1. When you experience everything as a catastrophe or an intense worry.

2. Feeling an overwhelming and prolonged sense of helplessness and sadness.

3. Difficulty concentrating on work assignments or other everyday activities that were otherwise manageable.

4. Your problems don’t seem to get better despite your efforts and help from family and friends.

5. Important relationships are strained or in jeopardy of being lost.

6. Friends have told you they are concerned and you and/or they recognize that you are repeating yourself in regards to problems and their lack of solutions.

7. You have had a significant change in sleeping and eating habits that are not explainable due to medical issues.

8. Unexplained recurrent headaches, stomach aches or compromised immune system.

9. You have suffered a trauma or loss and can’t stop thinking about it.

10. Disinterest and disconnection from previously beloved activities.

11. Your actions, such as drinking too much alcohol, using drugs or being aggressive area harming you and/or others.