07772874242 anna@annapluck.com

WHAT TO EXPECT IN YOUR FIRST COUNSELLING SESSION

Are you feeling anxious about your first anxiety therapy session? Normal!  I remember my first therapy session, and I felt daunted without having a clue what to expect.  So here is a guide on what happens with some tips to help you get the best from therapy.  

FIVE TOP TIPS

 

1. Take a deep breath and don’t worry about saying the wrong thing

There are no right or wrong sessions.  It’s OK if you get angry, cry or don’t know what to say.

2.  Jot down your questions or key points

Many people find it helpful to make a few notes before the first session.  This could include what you feel the problem is and your triggers or symptoms.  This helps stay focused and ensures nothing gets missed.  It’s also OK to bring a notebook and make notes during the session if that will be helpful for you.

3. Reflect on your triggers.

Consider when and how your anxiety shows up. Are there triggers? What are some coping mechanisms you’ve tried? Noting these beforehand can be helpful.  Don’t worry if you can’t identify anything – we will do this work together.

4. Be Open

You might worry about sharing some things.  There’s the fear of being judged or that you will upset me.  Share what you feel comfortable but know that I won’t judge you.

5.  It’s OK not to know

Don’t worry if you don’t know what to talk about or why you feel the way you do. Therapy is a journey of discovery, and it’s common for people to come to therapy feeling like things aren’t quite right but not sure exactly how or why.

What to expect in the first session

 

Your first session will involve getting to know each other and some admin.  This includes:

  • The Counselling Contract: This document outlines the expectations and responsibilities of both of us. It’ll cover confidentiality, fees, cancellation policies, and session frequency. Don’t hesitate to ask questions if anything is unclear.
  • Getting to Know You: I will ask questions to learn about your background, anxieties, and goals for therapy. Then, we can work together to decide the focus of the session.
  • Exploring Your Issues: Sometimes getting to know you takes up the whole of the first session, but if we have time and you want to, we will explore something in a little more detail.
  • Psychoeducation: This is counsellor speak for “teaching” you some skills or a framework to help you understand your problem. For example, I might explain the cycle of anxiety or the CBT (Cognitive Behavioural Therapy) theory of how thoughts, feelings, and behaviour influence each other.
  • Going forward: By the end of the session, we will have a good idea of what you need and a working plan for the future.

Every first session is different because all clients are different and have different needs, but that gives a little indication of what may happen

Your first session and follow ups are 5o minutes long but allow up to an hour so we have time for any admin like rebooking appointments or payment etc.

Counselling in Birkenhead

Maritime House Business Centre, 16 Balls Road, Birkenhead, CH43 5RE (almost Opposite LIDL)

Parking is free on Balls Road or side roads off Balls Road.

The counselling room is on the first floor, accessible via stairs.  If you have mobility issues or struggle with stairs, please let me know as it is possible to arrange to use a space on the ground floor with notice.

On arrival during normal working hours, please go to reception.  Outside of normal working hours, no receptionist is in so I will come to reception to meet you just before your session, therefore please don’t arrive early as you won’t be able to get into the building.

Maritime House Business Centre, 16 Balls Road, Birkenhead, CH43 5RE
Counselling in Chester

Chestergates Business Centre, 7 Telford Court, CH1 6LT, near Chestergates Vets and Costco.

There’s a free car park available, and you can use any space marked as Chestergates Business Centre.

The counselling room is on ground floor and there are wheelchair accessible toilets available for your comfort.

There is no receptionist so I will come to the door a couple of minutes before your appointment to meet you.  If you do arrive early please wait in your car until your session time.

A photo of Chestergates Business Centre
Online Counselling sessions

I also work online with video or phonecall.  This is ideal if you are unable to travel to see me and can be scheduled in a lunch break at work.

I will call you at your appointment time – please ensure you are in a space where you are able to talk confidentially, safely and without distractions.

ABout Anna

Hi, I am Anna. I am a therapist specialising in Anxiety, Stress, and Burnout. If you’d like to book a session, simply click the BOOK NOW button below. You can either book a full session or a 20-minute introductory call, which is your chance to ask any questions and check you feel comfortable with me before committing to a full session.

Or if you have a question you can always pop me an email at anna@annapluck.com