Last Updated: May 22nd, 2023
So, you’re mulling over therapy. You might have considered which types of therapy are good for you. You might have thought about how to find a great therapist.
But there’s one last question to answer: how often should you go?
Remember, therapy is a commitment. You get out what you put in. One thing you’ll be putting in is time.
How Often Should I Go To Therapy?
We recommend you go once per week.
Why? Several reasons:
- Going to therapy once a week allows you time to process your session. It also ensures too much time doesn’t pass between your appointments. This makes it easier to pick up where you left off after each session. As a result, you’ll see better progress.
- Going to therapy at this pace builds trust with your therapist. This helps you become more vulnerable. It also deepens your relationship with your therapist. Both points lead to more positive results with your therapy.
- Weekly sessions can help you build mindfulness habits throughout your week. You slowly build your introspective muscles at a rate that is sustainable.
When Will I See Results From Therapy?
Seeing the results of therapy depends on several things, including:
- The type of conditions, experiences, or traumas you’re working to resolve.
- How frequently you meet with your therapist.
- How much time and effort you put in between weekly sessions. You can spend this time reflecting and practicing mindfulness.
These factors mean people are in therapy for different amounts of time.
The American Psychological Association says most patients can expect to feel the benefits after 15-20 sessions.
You may be dealing with a chronic disorder or a complex condition. If so, you may need to see your therapist for longer and/or more often than once a week to benefit from therapy.
How To Make The Most Of Weekly Therapy
Fitting your sessions into the middle of a busy weekday might not lead to the best possible therapy experience.
Instead, if you can, leave yourself time before therapy to clear your mind and relax. Eat something a couple of hours prior so you’re not distracted by hunger and wear comfortable clothes. Preparing for your session can help you make the most of your time with your therapist.
Afterward, take some time to decompress. The therapy session might take you unexpected places. Intense feelings might show up and demand your attention. You may need a little time after your session for relaxation and self-care.
As you’re resting after your therapy appointment, take some time to reflect. Think about the things you talked about with your therapist, and ask yourself:
- How do I feel right now?
- What is staying with me from this week’s session?
- What do I still need to digest?
Allow yourself the time, stillness, and honesty to hear the answers to these questions.
Practicing self-compassion and gentleness as you process therapy is therapeutic in itself!
Daily Habits To Build As Part Of Your Therapy
You should schedule an appointment with a therapist once per week. (Or even more often, if you’re dealing with an acute issue.)
However, that once-a-week visit isn’t the end of your therapy experience. Far from it!
To get the most out of therapy, don’t leave the insights from your sessions behind when you leave your therapist’s office. Instead, continue to explore them throughout the week.
Part of this involves building the habit of looking inward daily.
You don’t need any tools to start a mindfulness practice. Sit in a quiet place, close your eyes, and relax. Breathe deeply.
When your body starts to feel calmer, ask yourself:
What emotions am I feeling right now?
Am I judging my thoughts, actions, or emotions too harshly?
What are my real priorities for today?
How can I sustain a sense of peace for the rest of the day?
Checking in with yourself daily like this will help you align with who you are and how you feel.
If something comes up during your daily inward practice that does not sit with you well, make a note of it and bring it up in therapy. Whether it’s a feeling you can’t quite shake, a situation that is challenging or an inner conflict, therapy is the perfect place to lean deeper into it.
Make Therapy Part of Your Week. We’re Here to Help.
Weekly therapy creates a steady pace of exploration and insight. It allows you to get to know and trust your therapist. And it punctuates a daily mindfulness practice with the opportunity to examine your feelings more deeply with a professional guide.
At Manhattan Mental Health Counseling, we offer easy, affordable and high-quality therapy online. Call us today, or contact us online, to be matched with a therapist.