Being someone who not only wants to work in mental health, but has battled their own mental health, I’ve realized something that a lot of professionals are not always good at.
Many fail to acknowledge when a client comes to them with a small goal, but then identifies all of their client’s other issues, disregarding nor asking how they can be of use for the small goal the client intended to work on with them. When we disregard the small issue, we are also disregarding the client’s need and their priorities. They came to us for THAT reason. Although we can see a bigger, mightier demon looming over them, we may not see the path they might already have an idea they need to take to slay said demon.
When we jump the gun without completely understanding where out client’s emotional health stands, we can end up causing more harm, and make them feel unheard while they decide to pull away.
We all intend well. We all want to see someone overcome their battles. But we cannot force them to do it the way we see fit, nor can we make them do more in each step than they are confident in doing. Everyone’s growth and recovery come at different strides. We must remember this and ask how we may assist in that path, while keeping them on track.