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The 25th of September is National Psychotherapy Day, and it’s a day well worth taking note of in your calendars.
Considering recent years and the unprecedented challenges, changes, and struggles we’ve faced globally, it’s safe to say we all need someone to talk to about things from time to time. Therapy is a fantastic way to get caring support from a professional to help you work through things.
The National Alliance on Mental Health reports that:
- 1 in 5 U.S. adults experience mental illness each year
- 1 in 20 U.S. adults experience serious mental illness each year
- 1 in 6 U.S. youth aged 6-17 experience a mental health disorder each year
There are many different approaches to therapy, and psychotherapy is one of them.
What is National Psychotherapy Day?
National Psychotherapy Day is dedicated to promoting, researching, and supporting psychotherapy for all who need it.
The campaign was created in 2012 by a group of licensed clinicians, graduate students, and professionals who believe in the transformative power of the therapeutic relationship and the science behind it.
The founding team for National Psychotherapy Day includes:
Why Was it Created?
When you think of psychotherapy, what thoughts first come to mind?
Psychotherapy has been popularised and often grossly misrepresented across mass media – from books to movies and TV series, and not always positively. It can sometimes be shown as a manipulative process, one that is intensely stressful and volatile. Many people have warped ideas of what exactly psychotherapy involves and what a session with a psychotherapist will be like.
Even though therapy is an effective, economical, natural, and meaningful way to improve lives, few people organically seek out the support of a therapist. Psychotherapy aside, there is still a stigma attached to mental health and seeing a therapist across our society.
Psychotherapy needed a unified campaign to promote the profession and combat negative stereotyping and stigma surrounding therapy in our communities. National Psychotherapy Day was created after the founders realized that psychotherapy, in general, has a huge image problem – and they wanted to correct that.
5 Ways to Get Involved
The day aims to raise awareness and spread positive messaging to all about the role of psychotherapy and how it can support individuals. There are plenty of ways to get involved proactively.
Here are five I’d recommend as a starting point:
1. Wear something turquoise.
The official color of the day is turquoise, so a really quick, easy, and visual way to show support and start a conversation could be to wear something in this vibrant shade! If you work with a team, you could all agree to wear turquoise for the day to see how many conversations you can start about psychotherapy and its positive impact as a therapeutic intervention.
2. Write a blog post or article to raise awareness.
Whether you’re a therapist or someone who has attended therapy and received psychotherapy, you could write a blog post or article about your experiences to get more positive messaging out there. It doesn’t even need to be anything that lengthy – even a social media post or Tweet about the day and the ways psychotherapy has helped you or your clients can go a long way to raise awareness.
3. Create a positive messaging board in communal areas.
Whether in a hospital, school, library, or community hall, consider creating a positive messaging board with some key facts about psychotherapy, the benefits of psychotherapy, and maybe even some stories from community members about their experiences (you could keep these anonymous to help people feel safe!). A visual display is a great way to get attention – don’t forget to use the color turquoise in some way!
4. Read a book about psychotherapy.
Whether fiction, non-fiction, or memoir – there are plenty of great books that can help boost our knowledge and awareness of what psychotherapy entails. Consider sharing on social media the book you’re reading and why on the day, and maybe even write up a book review when you’re finished to keep sharing positive messaging.
5. Support your local clinics.
Psychotherapy, and therapy in general, can often feel like it’s only for upper to middle-class members of society, but this simply isn’t true. Low-fee counseling centers are meeting the needs of millions of people every year. If you look nationwide, these centers are sparse, underfunded, and overwhelmed. Donating can make a huge difference in helping individuals access the therapeutic support they need when they need it.
Other ways to help out on the day include:
- Liking, following, and sharing posts from the National Psychotherapy Day official Facebook page.
- Sharing the Moments that Matter videos to your network and hear first-person accounts of psychotherapy and its benefits.
- Sharing this blog post across your personal and professional networks to help spread the word!
Where to Learn More
National Psychotherapy Day is a great way to give focus and meaning to a vital component within the world of therapeutic interventions, but it shouldn’t end there.
You can keep learning, engaging, and raising awareness all year round. Here are a few of my favorite resources to help you do just that:
- American Group Psychotherapy Association
- Sensorimotor Psychotherapy Institute
- What is Psychotherapy? – American Psychiatric Association
- Psychotherapy Journal
Don’t forget; you can also find many helpful resources to use with immigration evaluation clients right here on the site.
Check out the Courses page for everything you’ll need, and don’t hesitate to get in touch if there’s something you need help with that isn’t available. I’m always open to developing new resources that help YOU be the therapist you want to be.
I’m Cecilia Racine, and I teach therapists how to help immigrants through my online courses. As a bilingual immigrant myself, I know the unique perspective that these clients are experiencing. I’ve conducted over 500 evaluations and work with dozens of lawyers in various states. Immigrants are my passion, I believe they add to the fabric of our country.
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