“Your life can be more fulfilling" 

-Justin Hecht

For those new to therapy…

If you’ve never seen a therapist before, you may feel confused by the jargon and by the process of evaluating a professional to provide a service you may not feel comfortable judging. I’d like to suggest that you use some of the same strategies that you might use to choose an architect or a general contractor: use both your head and your heart.

Use your head by inquiring about education and credentials. Schooling and diplomas are important: you want to know that your therapist, in whom you’ll be investing a great deal, is an intelligent person capable of clear, rational thought. You also want to know that your therapist is a qualified professional, in good standing with legal authorities, and involved in a professional community. As with choosing any professional, a recommendation from a friend is very helpful.

It’s also important to use your heart. Work with a therapist is an intimate relationship, and it’s important that you feel comfortable and supported. It may be that all the ‘head’ qualifications check out fine, but you just don’t feel OK about your experience with any potential therapist. If that’s the case, trust your gut and look elsewhere. If, on the other hand, you have a sense that the person you are dealing with is sincere and caring, you may want to explore further.

Sometimes, a single initial meeting is enough to convince you that you’ve found someone you’d like to work with. Other times, you may wish to have multiple visits with several different therapists until you feel comfortable with your choice. Either way, it’s important to know that you can make the decision in a way that feels comfortable to you.

If you’re encouraged by what you read in this website, I invite you to contact me to schedule a consultation. [Email: justin@justinhecht.com Phone: (415) 673-0283]. I welcome your question about what therapy is and how I work, and will do my best to answer your questions simply, honestly, and directly. 

Justin Hecht, PhD.

©2005 Justin Hecht, PhD.