7 Healthy Things To Do When You Disagree With Your Therapist's Advice

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woman talking to therapist in an office with big windows

It takes courage to ask for help and be willing to explore what is going on within your mind, body and heart. 

Good for you if you have chosen to work with a therapist.

Finding the right therapist is like finding the right partner. You need to find a person that you trust.

If you pay attention to your inner wisdom, you will know when you have met the right person because it will feel just right.

Remember, though: Your therapist is not a god, and it is always okay to disagree with them.

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Here are seven things to consider if you disagree with your therapist

1. Explore the sensations of your body — what is it trying to tell you?

As you reflect upon what the therapist suggests, notice what you feel in your body.

What is happening to your gut? Does it feel uncomfortable? How familiar is this sensation?

Is this a feeling that comes when you are asked to do something that will stretch you or harm you? If the answer is that it will stretch you in a good way, you need to continue the path you began with your therapist.

RELATED: 7 Times I Should've Left My Awful Therapist (Before I Finally Did)

2. Notice the state of your emotions

What are you feeling in your heart when you consider the recommended action of your therapist? Are these positive or negative emotions? What are these emotions suggesting?

What clues do these emotions give you as to whether the therapist's suggestion is in your best interest?

It would help if you were honest with yourself. Dig deep into your inner world and discern what your counselor or coach is asking you to do.   

It is okay to disagree with your therapist.

3. Notice the conversations going on in your mind

If you are experiencing a lot of negative chatter in your head, it is essential to quiet this down. 

An excellent place to start is to ask yourself if there is any truth to these negative thoughts. Often there is a kernel of truth, but most of it you can release.

How are your negative thoughts impacting your reaction to the suggestion from your therapist? 

If your inner critic is getting in your way, find a way to quiet it down and see if you still have a concern.

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4. Examine your fears 

Honesty is crucial here. Spend time journaling to discern whether your fear is real. When your therapist asks you to do something, list the possible positive and negative outcomes.

For example, if your therapist asks you to take a medication you know has serious side effects, you might want another opinion.

It is okay to disagree with your therapist.

5. Discuss this difference of opinion with someone you trust

Choose a friend or family member you trust and know will be honest with you. Explain your concerns and why this proposed treatment does not feel right.

Share your doubts not only about the proposed treatment but any doubts you have about yourself.

Invite your friend or family member to paraphrase what they heard you say. Make sure you feel understood.

They may have questions for you to help you go deeper into yourself to discover what is the best course of action.

RELATED: Why It's So Important To Find A Therapist Who Understands You & Your Unique Identity

6. Consider going to another therapist, psychologist or coach

If you still have qualms about the proposed treatment after serious reflection, you might benefit from meeting with a different counselor, psychologist or coach. Maybe you will find a practitioner that is a better fit for you.  

It is okay to disagree with your therapist.

7. Consider alternative treatments for emotional, mental and spiritual issues

There are many different healing modalities. Keep trying the other modalities until you find one that works for you. Make sure you are not running away from what you need to do.

If you want to heal, you must choose one therapist, counselor or coach and work with them. Running from one person to the next will not solve your issues.

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Create your own path to healing

Your therapist is there to help you in a safe environment to explore the parts of you that you have repressed. The more you can shine the light on what is hurting you, the greater the healing you will experience.

If you still disagree with your therapist's direction, it is best to get another opinion.  

Remember that there is no path to healing without facing your own pain. There is no path to recovery without some self-love. 

You need to go in with an openness for what you need to heal. Your therapist might even suggest drugs. There is no shame in taking medication if it will help you.

Often you will need a variety of therapies to get to where you need to be.

Your path is unique. Twists and turns are natural. Always remember the goal: to heal emotionally. The course might change, but the destination remains constant.

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Roland Legge is an author, Certified Spiritual Life Coach, and teacher of the Enneagram. He helps people connect to their inner selves and find alignment with their highest purpose and values.