Often, when we think of someone who is seeking mental health care, we imagine someone who has a substance use disorder or other mental illness like anxiety, depression, or bipolar disorder, but the truth is you don’t need a formal diagnosis to benefit
from mental health care. While professional counselors are trained to, and do diagnose, professional counselors also work with clients who are seeking to generally improve their well-being.
Sometimes, there isn’t one life event that makes people
want to seek counseling. Everyday life challenges like unemployment/underemployment, financial worries, stress from work or even just seeing a lot of bad news in the media can leave us feeling down, though we may not be clinically depressed or feel
unable to cope. We all learn to take challenges in our stride and many of us find relief from everyday troubles through talking to friends, our partners, through exercise or meditation, or through faith.
Although more people tend to seek professional
counseling when they feel distressed, overwhelmed or stuck and aren’t sure what to do, or because they are going through a hard time, e.g. if they have experienced loss or trauma, you can benefit from working with a counselor even if you are
in a period of your life that you consider generally positive.