Online Therapy: What? Why? And is it Right for Me?

What?

More and more services are being offered online these days. Medical services and even counseling are now being   offered from the comfort of your own home or office through video chat services. Don’t    worry your privacy is still upheld- the medical providers and therapists should be using    secure and  confidential web servers that offer HIPAA compliance to follow the federal     mandates. 

With online therapy you still meet ‘face to face’ with a qualified therapist, only it is happening on your computer screen. 

Below are some considerations of whether or not online therapy may be right for you.

Where?

From the comfort of your own home or office, or while you’re traveling on the go. Get your support regardless of the obstacles or special circumstances you may have.

• Consider if you have a quiet place that you can speak openly without being overheard by someone else in your home or workplace. If you think that someone may be able to overhear you, this space will not work for a therapy session.

       A) Either you will be self-conscious and unable to fully open up for the extent of the therapeutic benefit, or

     B) Your confidentiality could be breached by having someone nearby listening in to what you are saying in a private session. Your therapist can only control your confidentiality from their end of the equation- it’s up to you to secure your own environment.

Why?

Obstacles to therapy happen all the time. 

Travel or transportation barriers are one possibility, or your health may be another challenge that keeps you from regularly attending appointments.

Maybe you have been seeking counseling support and struggle with one of these issues or frequently have to travel for work. If this is your situation, online therapy may be a great way to give you the consistent support that you need to move forward on your goals for a happier/ healthier life. Don’t let these barriers stop you from getting the help you need. 

Who?

Convenience, convenience, convenience. Many people that start therapy are unable to be consistent with their appointments for a multitude of reasons. And if you aren’t consistently going then you aren’t reaching your fullest potential. 

If therapy is convenient for you then it will be easier to stick with it and get the regular support you need to facilitate the positive changes you’re wanting.

Finding the right therapist when your area is limited is one problem you may face. If you live in a small town or a place where you don’t have a lot of choices, this option may give you the freedom to find the best fit for you. Don’t limit yourself or settle just because that’s what is available. 

Therapy works most effectively when you have a good connection with your therapist and feel understood. That means that if you find yourself settling you may not be getting as much from the work you’re doing as you could be. However, there are some limitations to finding an online therapist. Each state has different licensing regulations, so you may find some therapists are only able to provide to residents in the states in which they are licensed.

When?

It may be hard to get away from your high pressure job or to find the time in the day for self-care. Instead of having to schedule extra time out for your appointments to drive there, deal with traffic, and wait, maybe the 1 hour online meeting is best for your schedule. 

Take a lunch break or wrap up a task and hope onto the website just in time for your appointment. It can’t be more convenient then that! And pat yourself on the back for taking the time to focus on your needs and achieving your goals. 

How?

Technology is a must. Do you have reliable internet connection and a way to video chat? 

This may be as simple as a computer, laptop or your cell phone. You should still problem solve with your therapist about what to do in case the internet connection does drop and/or you get disconnected. 

Speaking of technology, many people can navigate simple tasks on a cell phone or computer, but feel uncomfortable with new programs or complicated tasks. 

Depending on the system your therapist chooses to use, it can be as simple as clicking a link and typing in your name, then you just wait until your therapist shows up on the screen. 

It doesn’t have to be hard or intimidating!

Why Not?

Is it personable? In most online therapy services, you will have one therapist that you regularly talk with and get to know. You and the therapist should be able to see each other, read some body language and all facial expressions, and hear each other clearly. 

The limitations to getting to know someone through video chat sessions is that you won’t see as much of the environment and may not see the full body to read all body language, but that may not be the barrier that you think it is. 

After 1-2 sessions you may find that you are perfectly comfortable with this option, it’s just the initial adjustment and unknown that people may find they aren’t sure about. 

However, online therapy isn’t for everyone. Even after all the information about it, you may still find yourself preferring the in-person experience. That’s perfectly fine! There also may be reasons that your therapist recommends in-person sessions for you, so trust your gut and your therapist’s recommendation. 

 

Brought to you by Therapist Lindsey Lowrance at Exploring Inner Peace. Lindsey is passionate about helping women in STEM & other high pressure careers learn specific strategies and tools for navigating career and relationship challenges. Helping Women Get Heard! For more information visit: www.exploringinnerpeace.com  Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  Phone: 720-243-3993

© Lindsey Lowrance 2017- This article MAY be shared or reprinted as long as the information is unedited and the author bio, including contact information is printed along with the tips. 

Starting a new job or bringing up pay raises have many challenges. Many women never negotiate their salaries and of those that do, many don’t feel confident in negotiating. Women in science careers often find themselves being underpaid in comparison to their male colleagues. While their fields are frequently male dominated, this is no reason for women to be paid less or valued less. It can be hard finding your voice and knowing what to say when negotiating feels like a confrontation. For most of us it causes anxiety. Here are some things to know before you start:

Please be on the look out for the following upcoming articles: "How to Not Feel like a Fraud at Work," "How to Speak to Your Boss Without Losing Your Cool," "Mindful Ways to Manage Conflict at Work."

Also, be sure to email me if you would like to be added to the Blog Updates List to be notified when new blogs are published. Send me a message with the email you would like me to send updates to, with "Blog Updates" in the subject line. 

Tricks to Getting Your Voice Heard in Meetings

Women in science careers often face being one of the few females at work and in meetings. Some women find themselves wanting to scream in the meetings when they are being shushed, ignored, and belittled for the hundredth time. Some try to avoid meetings all together or feel fed up and cry in the bathroom stalls after their work has been undervalued and their voices have been quieted by colleagues and supervisors. Unfortunately this is a common scenario for women in many science fields.  While their work environments are behind the times in gender equality, there are some things that women can do to take a stronger stance.

There are ways to feel more confident and empowered to speak up and get your point across in those meetings when shushing occurs. And it can be done without screaming, swearing, or being aggressive.

 

Ever wonder why the term “mindfulness” comes up often with wellness and therapy? It turns out that finding ways to be mindful, or present in the moment, can have health benefits like lowering blood pressure, calm emotions like stress, anxiety & anger, and can help you feel centered. Use these tips to give yourself a little peaceful break in your day, or to help fight off panic attacks. 

1. Count with your senses. Look around the room and list in detail 5 different objects you see. Name 4 different textures you feel right now (the cushion of your chair, your clothing, your feet in your shoes…). Name 3 things you can hear (an air vent, cars outside the window, a clock ticking…). Name 2 things you can taste. Name 1 scent you smell. 

2. Do the math! While driving in the car notice the numbers around you on speed signs and license plates. Do simple math with each by adding 4 and 5 on a 45 mph speed limit sign. 

3. Stop and smell the roses. Literally walk outside and stop at any plant or flower. Take a moment to smell the plant, feel the texture of it, and look closely at the details of each leaf/petal/branch.