And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.
When my family moved to Peru, I had dreams of having an online therapy practice. This was the time period in the US when video streaming was becoming common place and we were now seeing family across the country on a weekly basis via Skype, things which opened up a whole new online world to all of us.
Once we got settled into our new life in Peru, I realized that my online counseling private practice dream was not going to become a reality for me anytime soon. Why? Well, we were now living in a third world country, and the infrastructure was just not there yet. Simply put, the Internet was way too slow. So, no video streaming, no family visits over Skype and no online counseling private practice.
So, I had to wait. I had to wait until we moved back to the States to launch my online counseling practice.
In addition to the right platform, it was also important to me to get advanced training in online counseling and to try this type of counseling myself before offering it to others. In truth, I was very nervous before my first personal online counseling session. Not just because I was meeting my new counselor, but also because I had dreamed of an online counseling practice for years and I really wanted to like it. Well, I didn’t just like online counseling; I truly loved this new and unique type of counseling!
I loved it more than transitional, in office therapy. I loved that my therapist’s personality shined through immediately. I loved that I felt completely comfortable since I was in my own space and had my dog curled up at my feet. I loved not needing to get all done up and drive to her office (not that that was even possible since she’s not in the Dallas area). I loved that when my son was sick, I didn’t have to cancel our session. I loved that if it was a hard session, right afterwards I could go straight to my writing space at home and journal. From the first session, I was hooked on online counseling!
In my own online counseling private practice, I specialize in three areas. Here’s what makes online counseling great for these specializations:
- Counseling for Women- I get that you’re super busy. I get that it’s hard to be going through a life transition/change, anxiety, depression, etc. and find time to get the help and support that can personally help you with these stressors. Now, you can get the same support as with in office sessions, but with me, online, all without needing to leave your home or office.
- Grief and Loss- When you’re experiencing grief and loss, especially early grief, you may know that you need some extra help and support, but you most likely don’t have the energy required to get yourself to a weekly office appointment- showering, getting ready, driving- it may be too much at this time in your life. With online therapy, you don’t have to worry about any of these things, and you can still get the support you need.
- Support for Moms- It is often hard to get the help you need if you are experiencing grief and loss with infertility, a miscarriage or pregnancy loss. If you’re a new mom, you may be suffering from the baby blues or have a postpartum mood disorder (PPMD) such as depression or anxiety. Plus, with a new baby, it’s so hard to even leave the house to buy milk, let alone go to an office for counseling. Moms with older children, well, life just gets busier and busier, doesn’t it? Online counseling makes getting help and support easier and more accessible, at whatever stage of motherhood you are currently in.
After reading a life changing book called The Four Hour Work Week: Escape 9-5, Live Anywhere, and Join the New Rich by Timothy Ferriss, I started to see how important my time was and how I needed to protect this precious commodity in my life. This book really helped me see that even unnecessary drive time or checking my email all day long were taking huge chunks of time away from the most important areas of my life. Have any of you taken a few minutes out of your day to check your Facebook account, to find that an hour of your time has suddenly just disappeared? So, seemly small life changes like not having to drive to an online therapy session, over weeks and months, can free up hours and hours of your time, time you can now spend with family and in other important areas of your life, and not in your car driving to and from your sessions.
For this week, I’d like you to think about one way that online counseling could really help and support you, in your everyday life now, as well as in the future…