What would you say to someone who feels they have an issue they need to address but they don’t know where to start?

Often times clients will tell they are unhappy with their lives or their current situations but are unsure how to begin making improvements. Within therapy, we always try to emphasise to our clients the importance of being vulnerable and opening up to us and other providers. The more clients can express how they feel or what they want to change, the easier it is for us and other providers to help find a pathway towards improvement and happiness. Just asking for help and being able to be open and vulnerable is a brave, critical first step towards a better life.

Is it possible to have experienced mental health issues for the very first time due to Covid-19?

Yes, feeling heightened senses of anxiety, loss of sleep and feelings of fear could be felt by many individuals for the first time. It’s important for those experiencing mental health issues for the first time to use coping strategies that may have helped in times they’ve felt stressed or anxious. Here are some sensible measures that can help alleviate anxiety:

• Stay focused on the here and now, taking each day step by step.

• Be aware of negative thoughts and don’t give them too much power.

• Look after your body, get enough sleep and exercise, eat well, and avoid smoking, this will help protect your mental health and immune system.

• Stay connected with others so you’re not socially isolated or lonely – it can make a huge difference when we share our worries with others and connect with people who are supportive.

• Help other people, be kind and compassionate – when we help others, it helps us feel better.

How am I supposed to bring up my trauma with a therapist? I feel so awkward about mentioning it after seeing them for so long.

You, and only you, decide when you share your trauma with a therapist. The only timeline is yours, and there’s never any pressure to disclose until you are ready. If you feel ready to share experiences of trauma with your therapist, let them know that there’s something you want to share with them and a topic you specifically want to spend the session talking about. Again, you decided what you share and how you share it – go at your own pace.