Should I ask my therapist to have my sessions target my goals?

LeiaFlower

Confident
Whenever I mention wanting homework for my goals she usually tells me that what I'm doing already is working for me, but it doesn't help me feel like I'm working towards them. Don't get me wrong I know I'm impatient, and she's helped me reach some of my goals. I'm better at setting boundaries for myself and wanting respect from people. I still struggle with closer relationships. Though I'm working on feeling safe with people I know. There are others, I just can't think of them. However, with reaching either of these it felt like I got there by aimlessly going from talking about my week to getting into my core beliefs. Things don't feel concrete as if there's no direction my sessions go towards. I was wondering if I should want my sessions to focus more so on achieving my goals. Is there's a way I should ask her about this? How to ask her about this to be honest? Or maybe I'm not seeing the whole picture and being narrow-minded, forgetting the progress I've made. I don't know what to do in this aspect, and I don't want her to be upset for telling her how to do her job. The latter sounds childish but it's a genuine fear.
 

Friday

Moderator
No reason not to.

Also no reason not to start laying out for your own self, journaling/tracking, or in any other way tracking what you’re doing, why/how, & where you want to be… in any way that suits you.

Unless that’s something in & of itself that you’re working on not doing.
 

LeiaFlower

Confident
No reason not to.

Also no reason not to start laying out for your own self, journaling/tracking, or in any other way tracking what you’re doing, why/how, & where you want to be… in any way that suits you.

Unless that’s something in & of itself that you’re working on not doing.
I have my goals mapped out, what I want to overcome, and want to get out of therapy. I guess I need to track better how I'm achieving those goals. I just don't know how to achieve them. I guess that's why I wanted to lean on someone with better knowledge. A goal I have currently is being able to speak about my emotions. I have spoken up a few times for myself about how I'm feeling to people in various stages of relationships, i.e. close friend, acquaintance, peer. Though when I need to the most it's still a struggle that I don't know how to overcome. There simply never feels like I have enough time in the session to cover everything I want to cover. Sometimes my week is stressful, I have suicidal ideations, trauma triggers coming up, or I have problems with my relationships. Then I feel like I'm stuck having to decide which issue is more important all the while wanting to still work on my goals. I feel really stagnant in my life right now. I have a job I care about. In school for a passion I have. I have a decent support system yet everything feels like static.
 

Friday

Moderator
There simply never feels like I have enough time in the session to cover everything I want to cover.
Is it an option to extend your session time?

When I’m paying for therapy, I usually book 120min sessions, and the occasional 240, rather than the McStandard 50min. Not all therapists do longer sessions, although most trauma therapists do, IME.
 

LeiaFlower

Confident
I’m not for sure. I’m leaning more towards the no simply because she’s a regular counselor and not a licensed specialist. Adding another day doesn’t really seem like an option either. I know I asked a few times to come in for an earlier day and she said there was no openings. Don’t mean to shoot everything down. I’ll definitely still ask about longer sessions just in case.
 

arfie

MyPTSD Pro
if it hurts to ask, you might want another therapist. it's at the very least a subject worth open discussion. there is, however, allot to be said for trusting your therapist. if my own goals were right as rain, i wouldn't need therapy.

my very first long-term therapist was a big believer in peer support. he referred to himself as a reference book that never left the library and insisted that i make it my goal to get him back on the shelf as quickly as possible. he thought i should look to my therapy peers for support on the long haul.

that leads me to wonder if you should try augmenting your pro therapy with some peer support. just wondering. . .
 

Survivor3

MyPTSD Pro
I have my goals mapped out, what I want to overcome, and want to get out of therapy. I guess I need to track better how I'm achieving those goals. I just don't know how to achieve them. I guess that's why I wanted to lean on someone with better knowledge. A goal I have currently is being able to speak about my emotions. I have spoken up a few times for myself about how I'm feeling to people in various stages of relationships, i.e. close friend, acquaintance, peer. Though when I need to the most it's still a struggle that I don't know how to overcome. There simply never feels like I have enough time in the session to cover everything I want to cover. Sometimes my week is stressful, I have suicidal ideations, trauma triggers coming up, or I have problems with my relationships. Then I feel like I'm stuck having to decide which issue is more important all the while wanting to still work on my goals. I feel really stagnant in my life right now. I have a job I care about. In school for a passion I have. I have a decent support system yet everything feels like static.
Isn't it more worthwhile talking about your suicidal ideation, trauma triggers and relationship problems before you just focus on your goals? I mean those 3 aspects are critical. It's good to have goals and having them and working towards them is important but you need to take it one step at a time.
 

Movingforward10

MyPTSD Pro
Can you tell your T everything you put in your original post? All sounds reasonable to explore?

Just as an aside: if it feels like every week there are things happening during the week that you need to bring up to stabilise yourself: that maybe your goals need looking at? Sounds as those issues need addressing first? And the goals might just take a little longer. Stability first?
 

Sideways

Moderator
If it's financially viable? Consider a psychologist (don't know if the qualification transfers across borders, but I think the US is similar). They absolutely rock at stuff like goals. Even as a temporary thing - like someone to have half a dozen sessions with, each time you reach a significant point in your recovery.

Goals really wouldn't have been a thing that made a dent in my recovery but for the psychologists I've worked with. None of the other types of therapists (both more, and less, qualified) have done Goals as a pivotal part of recovery to the extent that I've covered with psychologists.
 

LeiaFlower

Confident
if it hurts to ask, you might want another therapist. it's at the very least a subject worth open discussion. there is, however, allot to be said for trusting your therapist. if my own goals were right as rain, i wouldn't need therapy.
I’m going to try an open discussion though besides this she’s a good therapist, and there’s already an established therapeutic relationship that I don’t want to repeat.
Isn't it more worthwhile talking about your suicidal ideation, trauma triggers and relationship problems before you just focus on your goals? I mean those 3 aspects are critical. It's good to have goals and having them and working towards them is important but you need to take it one step at a time.
Yeah, I guess you’re right. I guess I have blinders on an equate progress to reaching goals. I guess focusing on getting a better handle on those things are goals in itself. It’s just with those they seem harder which is probably the reason for my aversion.
 

LeiaFlower

Confident
Can you tell your T everything you put in your original post? All sounds reasonable to explore?

Just as an aside: if it feels like every week there are things happening during the week that you need to bring up to stabilise yourself: that maybe your goals need looking at? Sounds as those issues need addressing first? And the goals might just take a little longer. Stability first?
I didn’t even see it that way. But stabilizing myself is a goal. Or even trying to help the stagnant feeling. I guess I need to reevaluate my goals, put which ones have a higher priority. Though putting them on hold still feels like I’m not making progress.
 
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