Written by DiveThru Team
Reviewed by Natalie Asayag MSW, LCSW
‘Do I Need Therapy?’ 15 Signs You Would Benefit From It
Published Apr 16th, 2021 & updated on Apr 16th, 2021
Deciding to go to therapy is huge. HUGE, we tell you! So you should feel super proud of yourself for taking this step towards bettering your mental wellbeing, even if this whole therapy thing is uncharted territory for you.
But part of you might be wondering…Do I really NEED therapy, though? You could be experiencing some self-doubt and second guessing whether your inner thoughts, feelings or life problems are even important/big enough for therapy.
We’re here to tell you that no matter what you’re going through, therapy is a 10/10 option that you should really consider trying out. ‘Cause here’s the thing: Everyone deserves to feel heard. Everyone deserves a chance to work through their emotions, the good and the bad. You deserve the opportunity to improve your mental wellbeing and live your best life!
If you’re still unsure, that’s okay! Here are some signs that you would benefit from therapy. (P.S. There’s a 100% chance you’ll relate to the very last point if none else, so stick around!)
1. Your Sleep Schedule Is Not Ideal
Do you toss and turn all night? Hit snooze on every alarm in the morning ‘cause you just can’t get out of bed? Feel super tired all of the time, even though you’re technicallyyy getting enough hours of sleep every night?
If it’s a YES to any, or all, of the above, there could be something else going on (ahem, like stress…or anxiety…or depression) that won’t let you catch those ZZZs. Lack of sleep is linked to poor mental AND physical health, so don’t put off getting the help you need!
2. You’re Grieving
Grief is the painful emotion you feel when you’ve lost someone, or something, that means a lot to you. You could be grieving someone’s death, the end of a relationship, the loss of a job, or even the effects of climate change. But the good news is, you don’t have to go through it alone!
Grief therapy can be incredibly healing as it helps you process alllll the things you’re feeling, even those yucky emotions you’d rather ignore so they’ll just go away on their own (pssst…they won’t go away on their own. Talk to someone!).
3. Your Appetite Or Relationship With Food Has Changed
Maybe you have no appetite at all, even though you know that food = fuel and you gotta get those nutrients in. Maybe you struggle with binge-eating in private and feeling sooo ashamed when it happens. Maybe you have poor body image and have set some super restrictive eating habits to get the ‘perfect beach bod’ before summer rolls around. These are just a few signs that your relationship with food isn’t physically or mentally healthy, at all.
Drastic changes in your diet could be a sign of emotional eating, eating disorders, and even anxiety or depression and should be taken as signs that you might need some help!
4. You Rely On Substances To Cope With Your Feelings
If you’re under a lot of stress, or having a tough time dealing with your emotions, you might turn to substances to cope. Self-medicating with alcohol and drugs can alleviate the pain or distress you’re feeling in the moment, but they’re just a temporary escape and won’t help you in the long run.
Of course, there’s nothing wrong with having some patio beers with friends or enjoying a glass of wine while streaming The Bachelor. But developing a dependency on substances is obvs not healthy for your mental OR physical health, especially if they change your behaviour and put you (or others around you) in harm’s way.
5. You’ve Experienced Trauma
Trauma is a lasting emotional response to something really terrible that has happened to you. Whether it was something ongoing in your childhood (like abuse) or a one-time event as an adult (like a bad car crash), the long-term effects of trauma can be really hard to manage on your own.
When the effects of trauma are ongoing and unresolved, they can develop into a condition called post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Finding a therapist who specializes in trauma recovery can be helpful to work through any past or recent trauma, so that you don’t get to that point!
6. You’re Going Through A Breakup
Going through a breakup fucking sucks — there’s no other way to put it. When you’re in a relationship, you become used to the constant dopamine hits and lovey-dovey feelings on a regular basis.
So when that’s over and done? Oof, it’s rough. It’s like you’re going through love withdrawal. Chances are, you really miss the good times you shared with that person, no matter how things ended. Talking about it in therapy can help you navigate all of your feels and eventually move on from the relationship.
7. You’re Not Interested In Things That Usually Bring You Joy
When we’re going through some shit, we typically turn to the things that make us feel happy. Maybe you like to get up early and watch the sun rise with a cup of coffee. Or you might take your dog to the park and watch them run around with other furry friends. To unwind after work, you might light a candle, sink into a warm bath filled with allll the nice-smelling things. It could even be something as simple as re-watching our comfort show for the 76483th time.
But now, those activities that once filled you with joy just kinda feel…meh. It’s a huge bummer, and you’re not sure why those little things just don’t do it for you anymore. There could be an underlying problem going on, but good news — working through it in therapy can help bring that spark back!
8. Your Motivation Is Non-Existent
When the state of your mental health is no bueno, you’re probably not gonna be performing your best at school or work. It’s not that you’re lazy, or you wanna give up when things get too hard, it’s just that you’ve got no motivation. and it doesn’t matter how badly you WANT to feel motivated or productive. It’s just. not. there.
Maybe you’ve noticed your grades are slipping or that you’re always behind at work. Therapy can help you find the source of this problem and tackle it head-on, so that you can go back to kicking ass in the classroom/workroom like you usually do!
9. Your Mood Is All Over The Place
It’s normal to feel anxious, sad or angry sometimes. Life, right? It does things to us. But if it feels like you’re crying one minute and lashing out at someone the next (like, all the time) then hold up! This could mean that you’re struggling with regulating your emotions and need to learn ways to manage them a lil’ bit better.
Lucky for you, your therapist is kind of an expert at this stuff. They’ll guide you on how to regulate these back-and-forth emotions (and the source of these emotions) so they don’t rule your life!
10. You Just Don’t Care
That’s it, that’s the tweet. You just DGAF about yourself, your life, anything.
11. You Worry All The Time
It’s normal to worry now and then, but constant anxiety? It can be super overwhelming to deal with, not to mention hella draining. Always worrying about possible scenarios, what other people think of you, and other stressors that play on a constant loop in your brain? Nuh-uh, we’re not having it anymore!
If anxious thoughts are controlling you, we’ll say it again…therapy. You’ll learn how to accept, manage and reframe these thoughts so that you can work through them when they show up!
12. You Feel Hopeless
Feeling hopeless about your situation or your future can be a scary feeling. It’s like there’s no end in sight to the hard times, and nothing to look forward to. You might feel like just giving up on even trying, ‘cause what’s the point? It’s not like things are gonna change…
Wrong. Things can abso-freakin-lutely get better for you. There is always hope, friend. You just might need some help along the way, and there’s NO shame in that.
13. You Isolate Yourself
You get a text from your mom checking in, but just can’t bring yourself to answer. Your friends ask you to hang out on the weekend, but you make up some B.S. excuse so you don’t have to go. Maybe you avoid the lunchroom at work so you don’t have to socialize with your coworkers, even though you do like them.
Everyone needs their alone time (especially if you’re an introvert who needs to unwind after socializing all day). But withdrawing socially could mean that you’re avoiding people ‘cause you don’t want them to see you struggling. Then you just end up feeling more lonely, and the cycle goes on!
14. The People In Your Life Are Worried About You
Sometimes we don’t see what’s right in front of us, but our loved ones do. If you’ve been getting a lot of “Are you okay? I’m worried about you…” then there’s probs a reason.
Instead of getting angry or upset with them, or even pushing them away, maybe accept there’s some truth in what your friends and fam are saying. Maybe you haven’t been yourself lately, and the people who care most about you have started to notice. They wanna support you, so hear them out if they’re showing concern for your wellbeing!
15. You’re A Human Being
Are you a human being? Do you have thoughts? Feelings? Okay, now select all images that contain a stop sign so we know for sure you’re not actually a robot…
Kidding. Of course we know you’re human. That’s why we remind you that everyyyone can benefit from therapy. You don’t have to wait for a tragic thing to happen, or be struggling with a diagnosed mental illness. We all have mental health, and we all deserve to feel heard and validated. Talking through our problems can be really helpful, no matter what our personal situation might be. Everyone can benefit from some guidance and learning how to cope with the everyday bullshit, right? Right.
SO, there you have it. A long list of signs you could benefit from therapy. Remember: there’s no shame in the therapy game. We support you, no matter what route you take towards bettering your mental health!