Light At The End Of The Tunnel: The Process Of Ending Your Therapy Sessions
You may not believe this, but therapists want you to be able to conclude your therapy sessions; we want to help you reach the end wherein you are mentally in such a different place that you can continue with your daily routine independently. In addition, your therapist wants you to be able to look back upon the journey you have both embarked upon and reflect on the changes you have made throughout your time together. You may not remember, but your therapist will have planned the termination of your therapy sessions from your first initial meeting – don’t be offended! This is a good thing and shows that your therapist truly cares for you and wants you to get better, rather than hoping to keep you in therapy as a means of pinching money from you.
In this week’s blog, I will show you how we can complete the groundwork to reach the light at the end of the tunnel in a therapy session.
Prepare for the end from the start!
From the start of our time together, I will map out and plan the termination of our sessions and make you aware of the progression plan I have in mind for our treatments. This will allow for us to establish an end and a pace you are comfortable with. Don’t worry; you won’t be completely blindsided when the end of our session is approaching. After each session, we will discuss your progression and how you succeed with each treatment before moving on to the next stage. Of course, it is impossible to predict how well each client will respond to treatment so that time may vary, or we may go off the plan – this is entirely normal. It is essential to make sure you are ready to end your therapy and not throw you into the deep end of independence.
Set clear therapeutic goals
Setting goals and objectives prevent the therapy from deterring from your termination plan whilst also ensuring that therapy sessions are practical. Sometimes plans can go off track due to new arising issues that may have occurred that week. This can delay therapy progress indefinitely. Therefore, it is essential to set goals to complete your progression plan successfully; counselling reviews can also help assess your progress.
Understand clients readiness for termination
Signs a client is ready to move forward from therapy:
- Significant reduction in symptoms or issues that arose from problems
- Professional doctors opinion that patient no longer needs treatment
- The remaining symptoms can be tackled with medication or other forms
Clients may even come to you themselves and say they believe they have improved enough to end therapy sessions. They may do so by asking how many sessions are left of the plan or leaving subtle hints throughout your time together that they are ready to move on. This may include cancelling on you, prioritising social life or not completing tasks for each session. It is important to recognise if these are signs of clients wanting to move on or if they are giving up. Your therapist needs to believe you are ready to terminate sessions before you do. Otherwise, you may not be able to cope independently fully.
On the other hand, if you are worried about therapy sessions ending when your therapist believes you’re ready, your therapist will help you understand why you are struggling to terminate your therapy sessions. This could be because you fear the change in routine or that you won’t maintain results alone. Your therapist will help you recognise and understand that you are ready.
Create a maintenance plan
You might be worried about falling off track once your therapy sessions end. A great way to ensure you remain on track whilst also being independent is to create a maintenance plan with your therapist. A maintenance plan allows you to understand your triggers and warning signs and teach you self-care and coping strategies. These strategies will be addressed throughout your treatment sessions and should be utilised even after therapy ends.
Remember, you are not alone and never will be, even if your time with a therapist is coming to an end. This may incite fear in you, but you should take a step back and recognise how astounding your journey to recovery has been to get this far. Coming to the end of therapy is a great first step to independence and grabbing life by the horns. So take a deep breath and acknowledge how incredible you are to reach this stage. If you are interested in beginning your journey with therapy, please head over to my website at Liddy Carver; I want to help you reach the end of treatment to get back on track with your life.