Although depression isn’t solely about lack of communication and a dearth of opportunities to express your thoughts, they sure do form an important part of depression. Which is why most therapists recommend talking out your feelings as one of the most important aspects of therapy in order to address the root cause of any emotional turmoil. This raises a question “But does talk therapy work?”
In the expert opinion, talking is an effective therapy that paves way for the release of any emotional disturbances one might be going through. It can be compared to the foot-in-the-door phenomenon where the therapist gains some insight into what the patient is going through. True that its benefits are not visible overnight, it pays off. It takes many days of effort from both parties, the patient as well as the therapist, to reach and pull out the root cause within.
Understanding talk therapy:
Speaking of depression, there are two major types of talk therapies involved: Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and Interpersonal Therapy. The former is more concerned with understanding how a pessimistic attitude and negative and thinking patterns affect your thought process on a regular basis while the latter aims at helping you induce a positive relationship with your fellow mates.
Apart from this, there is psychotherapy which is involved in treating clinical depression as part of the whole treatment program. It is, perhaps, the best talk therapy for depression and anxiety. It is important that the depressed individual is undergoing medications too along with talk therapy to be able to heal faster and better.
When does talk therapy work well for one?
Many times it so happens that the root cause of the problem is a petty issue magnified by our own thoughts and insecurities. Opening to somebody and giving voice to your thoughts will give you a clear idea about what exactly your problem is. Talk therapy isn’t about getting answers from your therapist. It’s more about you taking a look at your own problems and deciding to act, while your therapist only guides you as to how you can make that happen.
For somebody suffering from depression, before asking does talk therapy work, it is important that they seek medical aid. But additionally, depressed individuals need to speak their heart out from time to time. Let me assure you that this won’t be all dramatic like how the movies portray it to be. You won’t be asked to lie down on a couch and you won’t have just one burst of sadness and waterworks post which all your life will seem crystal clear and smooth like a cakewalk. Instead, your mental situation will evolve at a snail’s pace. Bit by bit, slowly and steadily, one step at a given time.
Who should you talk to?
For any normal individual, just speaking their heart out on a daily basis is enough of talk therapy to keep their mind active and going. It can be a friend, a dog, or even a statue. But when it comes to depressed individuals, make sure that talk therapy is only a part of your entire treatment program. Although talk therapy does help to a considerable extent, don’t rely on it alone to get you out of your depression.
Here are some people with whom you can consider talking as an effective therapy. These are professionals who can be trusted even with the deepest of your secrets.
- Friend or Life partner, provided you can trust them to keep your secrets confidential
- Strangers on the bus, since they can’t give away your secrets
In addition to these, life coaches are personality guidance trainers are also good enough options. These are trained professionals whose job revolves around guiding people through any difficulty they may be facing in terms of personal issues, family problems, career progression, or personality development. Expressing your thoughts out to a life coach will give you a clear understanding of where your own problem lies, and help you address it.
Does talk therapy work?
So, does talk therapy work? Yes. Talk therapy works. It works fine with normal people as well as with depressed individuals. But you need to give it some time. And consistency. You will see for yourself a change you never witnessed before. You will be more expressive, more active, and definitely more optimistic. If nothing else, you will at least have seen your issues from a different perspective. These lessons will eventually help you pull yourself out of that ugly phase in due time.
For people undergoing depression, it is important that you seek help from a therapist specially trained in talk therapy for depression and anxiety to cater to depressed individuals only. And if you are just looking to speak out your heart to someone before your thoughts start dominating you, you can choose a well-trained life coach or a professional therapist to help you work your way through it. Using talk therapy the right way will eventually lead you to see its benefits in the long run.
When does therapy start working?
So, when does talk therapy start working? You really can’t say. The time taken is different for different individuals. Talk therapy cannot be confined only to certain ‘types’ certain ‘situations.’ Even though depression is a medical condition, the description of talk therapy cannot be limited to medical terms only. You may choose to talk to your therapist, stranger, a friend, your cat or, heck, a wall.
And don’t worry about the question, “Does talk therapy work?” If putting your thoughts out there in the form of words helps your cause and contributes to the betterment of your condition even the slightest bit, it doesn’t really matter who those words are reaching. And do yourself a favour: don’t wait to go through an emotional roller coaster to speak your thoughts out. Cultivate this healthy habit of speaking out loud about whatever bothers you. In the coming years, your mind will thank you for putting it out of so much misery that would arise if you didn’t speak up.