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How to encourage people to seek professional help?

by Joseph W., Licensed & Registered Counsellor

Date: 29 Jan 2023


Encouraging our loved one to seek professional help can be a challenging task, as individuals may be hesitant or resistant to seeking help for a variety of reasons. However, there are several strategies that can be used to encourage people to seek professional help:

  1. Normalize seeking help: Let people know that seeking help is a common and normal thing to do, and that many people benefit from professional help. It can be helpful to share personal stories of individuals who have successfully sought help.

  2. Provide accurate information: Provide accurate information about what professional help is, what it can do, and how to access it. This can help to dispel myths and misconceptions about seeking help.

  3. Listen actively and respectfully: Listen actively to the person's concerns, fears, and doubts about seeking help. Acknowledge their feelings and validate their experiences.

  4. Emphasize the benefits: Discuss the potential benefits of seeking help, such as improved mental health, increased self-awareness, and the ability to cope with stress and difficult situations.

  5. Remove barriers: Identify and remove any barriers that may be preventing the person from seeking help, such as lack of transportation, lack of insurance, or fear of stigma.

  6. Offer support: Offer to assist the person in finding a professional and in making an appointment. Accompany them to their first appointment if they would like.

  7. Be patient: Remember that change takes time and that it may take several attempts for a person to seek help. Be patient and continue to offer support and encouragement.

  8. Use a referral service: Refer people to a professional that is well-suited to their needs, rather than just giving them a list of professionals.

It's important to remember that everyone is different, and what works for one person may not work for another. The key is to be sensitive, non-judgmental, and respectful of the individual's decision-making process.


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