Tips for Online Therapy

​Online therapy can be a big adjustment and feel awkward. But it doesn’t have to be. It can be a worthwhile support, particularly in a time of crisis or isolation. So how can you make the most of it?


 

  • ​Treat it like a face-to-face: While having therapy online provides convenience & comfort, getting out of your PJ's and bed will help you focus. Get into some comfy clothes, grab a cuppa & settle into a space where you feel calm and relaxed. It is amazing what difference it can make to your mindset and motivation!
     

  • Time & Space: The emotional nature of therapy makes it even more important to have some space and time set aside to engage with this process fully. Set aside the time intentionally. Ensure you have enough uninterrupted time for a normal length session (1 hour). Be prepared to allow extra time for setting up and logging into the meeting on time, especially the first time.

    Carve out a space where you feel safe and comfortable and where you can attend the session uninterrupted by people (big & small) and noise. Distractions are never ideal when you’re trying to work — and therapy is rigorous, difficult work sometimes!

Cat and Working

  • Expect some awkwardness at first: No matter what platform your therapist is using and how tech-savvy they are, it’s still going to be a different experience from in-person — so don’t be alarmed if it doesn’t feel like you and your therapist are “in-sync” right away. It can be tempting to think that some discomfort or awkwardness is a sign that online therapy isn’t working for you, but if you can keep an open line of communication with your therapist, you might be surprised by your ability to adapt!
     

  • Practice naming your emotions more explicitly: In the absence of bodily cues, learning to be more descriptive and expressive around our emotions can give your therapists useful information. For instance, if your therapist says something that strikes a nerve, it can be powerful to pause and say, “When you shared that with me, I found myself feeling frustrated.” These are useful skills in self-awareness regardless, but online therapy is a great excuse to start flexing those muscles in a safe environment.
     

  • Internet/Phone connectivity: Have reliable and secure Internet connectivity. For phone counselling, please ensure you have good mobile phone reception.
     

  • Device: Ensure your device is sufficiently charged. Try not use your phone for video counselling, as the screen is too small.
     

  • Sound/Video: Ensure you have a working in-built microphone or headset and a working camera. Try to get good lighting so we can see each other clearly, even if it's just the top half!
     

  • Program: Download and register for the application that is required for the meeting. If you are using Zoom, I will send you a link to the meeting prior to the session. You will need to click on the link to open either your browser or application to attend the meeting.
     

  • Don't be afraid to give feedback: As you both experiment with online therapy, feedback is essential to figuring out what does and doesn’t work for you. Don’t be afraid to try something different, vocalize what you need and expect, and be willing to meet your therapist halfway as you do this work together.