No doubt you’ve heard of Sigmund Freud. About 150 years ago, Freud and other men of the time started the idea of psychotherapy, the idea that a person who is suffering from certain mental disorders could be helped.

When we first mentioned Freud, you might have rolled your eyes. Haven’t many of his ideas been disproven? Wasn’t he a bit hung up on sexualtiy in just about every situation? Yes and yes. But there’s something that Freud and his colleagues started that has stuck around and continues to this day: talking. And why has it stuck around? Because it works.

Whether you lay down on a pillowy, soft couch like Freud’s or you simply sit in a chair across from a therapist, talking through your problems is almost certainly going to be a big part of your path to mental wellness. While there are dozens of reasons that psychotherapy helps, here are four simple reasons why it works.

You Need A Third Party

Have you ever complained about something to a friend? If they’re a good friend, they’ll often support you. They’ll see everything from your point of view. Even if it’s obvious that you’re in the wrong, they’ll help you justify your actions because…well, they’re your friend. While it’s nice to have the support of someone else, that won’t help you address your problems.

Don’t get us wrong, a therapist is there to listen and offer support. But because they don’t have to worry about sullying a friendship, they’re more likely to say something that you need to hear.

You Need Someone Who’s Confidential

Many people are reticent to talk to others because they’re afraid their secrets will get around. This fear leads them to talk to no one, which means they just keep everything to themselves.

Being able to open up to someone with no fear — “getting it off your chest” — can be a great way to get problems out in the open. Many times people will say things out loud to a therapist that they’d never even say to themselves in an empty room.

You Need Someone To Ask You Questions

Therapists go through years of training so that they can both listen and talk. When they do talk, it’s often to ask a question. While this is infuriating to some patients, it’s more important to raise questions than to give answers. Answers don’t help people nearly as much as questions, because a question engages the patient in their own mental healing.

You Need Answers

We just said that questions are more important than answers; asking the right questions can guide a patient in the right direction. So if the patient is reluctant to say something out loud, a mental health professional can lead them toward the answers that are just below the surface.

At Integrated Counseling Services, we’re ready to help you on the path to mental wellness. We see people with mental issues and perfectly healthy people talk to a therapist to get their problems out on the table, because a problem that can be identified is easier to deal with. If you’d like to talk to someone who can help, book an appointment today!