Life

10 Reasons Why Every Man Should Go To Counseling At Least Once

A lot of men think that they’re “too tough” for counseling, or perhaps they simply think they don’t need it. But in reality, all men (including you) should make the effort to attend at least one therapy session in their lifetime, and here’s why:

  1. It gives you a third-party perspective. When you talk about your problems with your friends, family, or romantic partner, they’re probably going to do what they feel like they should do as a loved one. They might tell you that “you’re perfect just as you are” or that the person at the root of your problems is someone else (even if it’s really you). A professional counselor is paid to help you deal with your problems, and even though the things they tell you might not necessarily be what you want to hear, that unbiased viewpoint could be a lot more helpful than the advice your friends give you.
  2. It’s a good way to release stress. A lot of men “deal” with their negative emotions by burying them and just trying to push past them, but that method can cause even bigger problems in the future. Having an outlet for your anger, sorrow, and stress can help you feel lighter and happier, and a counselor can help you find healthy ways to manage those negative feelings.
  3. It’s an investment for your mental health. Your brain is a body part too. Just like you’d (hopefully) seek medical treatment if you injured your leg, you should also seek therapy if your mind doesn’t feel healthy. Even if you generally feel pretty great about life, go to just one counseling appointment as a mental “check-up” to make sure that there’s really nothing that’s been lying beneath the surface and slowly chipping away at your happiness.
  4. It’ll help improve your relationships. Communication is vital to any relationship, whether romantic, familial, or platonic. While listening is crucial to maintaining healthy relationships, being able to speak about how you’re feeling and what you need is also super important. A counselor can help you develop better communication and conflict resolution skills, but also, just the act of speaking to someone can make it easier for you to talk about your problems with other people.
  5. It’ll improve your ability to cope with negative situations. You might think that you handle tough life situations just fine, but if you’re self-medicating with alcohol or drugs, or you’re bottling up all your negative feelings, your coping skills could probably use some work. A counselor can help you find the tools you need to get through life’s challenges in healthy ways. Although some of them may be harder to implement in the short term, the long-term effects of those strategies can drastically improve your life.
  6. It’ll help you be more open to discussing your emotions. Ideally, you’ll have multiple people in your life you can use as a support network, but if you’re not used to opening up emotionally, going to your best friend or girlfriend about your troubles can feel awkward and uncomfortable. Speaking first with someone who’s trained to be an active listener and won’t judge you can help you rebuild your trust in people, and eventually, you might feel like the people in your social circle are the only “therapists” you really need.
  7. You don’t have to feel like a “burden.” If you choose to open up to your loved ones, they definitely won’t consider you a burden, guaranteed. But when you have depression or anxiety, you might feel like you’re annoying your friends by talking about your problems. Even though your worries are likely unfounded, talking to a counselor is an easy way to guarantee that you’re releasing your emotions without bringing anyone else down. Remember, your counselor is paid to listen and give you advice, so if anything, you’re helping them by coming to them with your internal or external struggles.
  8. It’ll make you feel accomplished. Deciding to attend a counseling session can be scary, especially if you’re not used to talking about your feelings. But in this case, the anticipation is usually worse than the action. Once you go in and face your fears of talking about your emotions, you’ll come out feeling proud of yourself for doing what a lot of men (and women, for that matter) never summon up the courage to do.
  9. You might need it more than you think. It’s easy to lie to yourself and pretend that you’re fine, even if your well-meaning significant other or friends tell you that they’re worried about you. But once you actually go in there and start talking about the things that have been weighing on your mind, you’ll probably realize that you should’ve done this a while ago.
  10. It can help you help others. If you struggle to do things just for yourself, consider the added bonus that the strategies you learn about in counseling can help you give better advice to your loved ones. Once you’re better equipped to deal with your own problems, you can use what you learned to help your friends deal with their own struggles.