Counseling is an excellent method for engaging in anxiety recovery (see ASN’s Why Counseling for further information). But, even though counseling is not scary and can provide things that other professions cannot, what exactly are the benefits of counseling?
The primary benefit of counseling is that it gives a person a safe and secure place to talk to another person, and counselors are trained to be able to listen to and understand anything, no matter how strange or unusual it may seem at first. All human beings need a safe and secure place where they can talk open and freely to another person without fear of being judged (see ASN’s Essentials for Human Happiness for more on this and other concepts that make people happy), and most people, let alone anxiety-sufferers, have nowhere like this to go. Women tend to find a relationship like this much easier than men, and for men, in most cases their spouse serves as their sounding board. Having somewhere where one can go without fear of being judged releases an incredible amount of emotional pressure and stress, which allows the person to be happier and more relaxed; this goes for all people, and doubly so for anxiety sufferers.
The next benefit of counseling is that it places a high value on the worth of the individual. When a person first enters a counseling session, he or she is praised for having the courage to seek help. During counseling, the counselor helps the anxiety sufferer to select a method to use to help recover from anxiety such as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, or any of a variety of other techniques. Counselors may present other techniques to the client, but the client has the ultimate say of which technique he or she feels works best for him or her. Finally, the client works with the counselor to establish reasonable goals that he or she wants to attain from counseling. In sum, counseling makes it all about the client, while the counselor does his or her best to help the client reach his or her goals. For many, including anxiety-sufferers, being in the position to make significant choices over their own well-being is a new experience, and can be very empowering when the process is nearing its end.
Finally, counseling is a very emotionally gentle process. This is primarily stated from the perspective of the counselors. In general, counselors are trained to be very emotionally gentle because they realize that if they make even slight comments or mistakes that are perceived by the client as threatening or judgmental, that they have begun to harm the therapeutic relationship. Clients who feel judged withhold information, which in turn impedes progress, and therefore necessitates the emotionally gentle approach. This is not to say that going through counseling will be easy. Going through counseling means that one is willing to make changes in his or her life and making changes can sometimes be very emotionally distressful. However, counselors help people to reduce stress so that they can live the healthy and happy lives they want to lead.
These, in sum, are the benefits of counseling. Counseling is a very surprising experience for anxiety-sufferers, who tend to have had many poor experiences with people who were misguided in their attempts to help. Counseling is warm, kind, and gentle in its approach, but it requires great courage and personal strength to work through it. In sum, counseling is very advantageous and beneficial for every individual who attempts to walk through its path.