Updated: Nov 27, 2018
Around this time a year ago, I wasn't in the best of head spaces. I was working a job that caused me more stress and anxiety than I've ever had in, well, ever. I was in the throes of trying to rekindle a relationship that honestly should've stayed in the past. It was difficult for me to appreciate any of the positive things that were happening in my life at the time because I was in such a negative space mentally and spiritually. I found myself crying and venting to my family and friends almost every day about how unhappy I was. Then at the end of the year, I had an emotional breakdown.
It was at that point when I decided I needed to talk to someone professionally for a few reasons:
I needed to start taking accountability of my life. I was tired of treating myself like the victim of my circumstances. Eventually I had to realize that everything I was going through was a result of my decisions and outlook on life, and I had the power to change it.
My vulnerability needed boundaries. The people closest to us know pretty much everything about us -- the good, the bad and the ugly. While it's a blessing to have folks around us that we can lean on, I've come to realize that even the ones we trust the most don't need to know everything going on in our lives because: a) while they can give good advice, they can't fix all of our problems (because they have problems of their own) and b) people we're close to have a tendency to hold on to our pasts longer than we do. Since therapy provides a space where I can be completely open and vulnerable, I have a lot more control over what I share and how I express myself in my personal relationships.
I needed to see myself through an objective lens. Because our friends and family already know so much about us, they generally perceive us and our situations from a more personal, subjective point of view. By going to therapy, I am able to be completely transparent with someone who has no prior knowledge of me or my life, which allows me to assess things about myself from a completely objective perspective.
Do I still talk to my friends and family about things going on in my life? Of course I do. Therapy simply allows me to self-reflect and process all of my raw thoughts and emotions in an uninterrupted, unbiased environment.