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What to Change if You Think Therapy is Failing You

Updated: Jan 12

Do you feel like therapy isn’t working for you? You don’t have to settle for therapy sessions that leave you hopeless and confused. There are things you can change today that may provide more effective results.


Consider these options:


1. Recognize the need for change. The first step is to recognize that you may need to make changes in how you receive or use therapy.

  • First, ensure you’re giving therapy a chance. You don’t want to quit after one session. However, if you’ve been in therapy for months without seeing an improvement, then it may be time for a change.


2. Talk to the therapist. You can’t expect to change anything if you don’t address your concerns. Explain to your therapist how the therapy isn’t working for you. Perhaps you and your therapist can devise a different approach to your issues.

  • It’s important to focus on specific things, so your therapist can understand how to help you. Discuss what you would like to change. Talk about the roadblocks that seem to be stopping you from seeing success with your therapy.


3. Consider another therapist. In some cases, you may not work well with your first therapist. It’s possible that you simply need to find another person who will better understand you. You may even need to try several therapists until you find the right one.

  • It’s crucial that you investigate any therapist that you may be considering. Ask questions. Ensure they are professional and know about your condition. You may need to seek out a specialist.


4. Check out other types of therapy. You may benefit from a different type of therapy. Individual therapy works well for many people, but it may not be the right thing for you. You may do better with group or couples therapy. Be willing to explore other therapy options.

  • Consider other therapy modalities as well. Cognitive Behavior Therapy, for instance, may work well for others, but maybe you need a different approach. This is another conversation that may need to take place with your therapist.


5. Medications. It’s possible that therapy isn’t enough by itself to make a significant change in your life. Perhaps medication will help. Talk with your doctor about medicines that could make a difference, and their side effects, so you can make an informed decision.

  • You may also want to think about a combination of medication and therapy. In most cases, this combination more effectively provides the results you seek from therapy.


6. Be brave. It’s difficult to admit that something isn’t working for you, but you’re investing time, effort, and money to have therapy. If the process isn’t working, it’s important to speak up. You won’t see any changes until you address the issues.

  • Consider, too, how much you’re really exerting yourself. Are you adhering to the therapist’s guidance or maybe you have some resistance in following the treatment plan? Are you ignoring the techniques and homework? This is something that should be explored. Therapy won’t work unless you’re willing to use the information you learn and implement the techniques both inside and out of the therapist’s office.


Therapy is an individual process and may need to be adjusted along the way. If you feel that your current therapy isn’t working for you, have an open discussion with your doctor and consider alternatives. You may find the solution that makes all the difference!