My Journey with Therapy

I've always been obsessed with psychology.
Probably because my parents put me in therapy when I was 4 years old. 

From a young age I had challenging behaviors that mostly manifested in defiance and then anxiety. School in general freaked me out. I would refuse to go on the bus in first grade, hide in the nurses office in middle school and call my mom in high school and tell her that I needed to go home. It was embarrassing and debilitating. 

So I saw therapists. I spoke to them about anger, about my toxic relationships, about my guilt, about my parents, about attachment and about my friendships. I talked and talked up until it was time for me to go to college. 

I grew up in a small town and went to preschool with the same classmates I graduated high school with. When I got to my first semester of collage I absolutely shut down. I had never been so alone before, stuck somewhere with people I didn't know. I was diagnosed with social anxiety and prescribed Lexapro and Xanax to help me function. I transferred back home and was sick to my stomach about it every day. I knew how much I was capable of and I knew how badly I wanted to explore the world but I was allowing myself to get in my own way. 

Back to therapy I went. This time it was entirely my choice. I was determine to study abroad and determine to go off any medication. I was not going to let my anxiety ruin my potential and outweigh the goals I had for myself. I sat with a therapist who asked me to think of the worst case scenarios. What would happen if you threw up in front of everyone (a very real fear I had)? What would happen if you didn't go abroad? What would happen if you went to sleep without saying goodnight to the people you love? I was terrified of impermanence and separating from my family, but breaking my fears down shifted my entire perspective. 

When I mustered up the courage to study abroad in Spain, I was set free. The first 24 hours were tough, but I persisted. I was living independently in a new scary place and I got myself there. I did it. I made friends out of strangers and conquered my fear of being so far away. It opened up a door of endless possibility. One thing lead to another and I was able to move to Los Angeles on my own, again, away from everything I knew to a city of strangers. 

So here are my thoughts on therapy. It's incredible and transformative...if you have the right person and if you deeply and truly believe in yourself. I saw 8 different therapists before speaking to one who truly helped me and got to the core of what I needed. And maybe therapy isn't for you, maybe you need health coaching or behavior consulting and if so, reach out. Because if there's one thing I understand, it's anxiety.

But maybe you need to pet your dog, go for a run, have dinner with your best friend.
You decide. But make the change you're capable of.
What will the catalyst be for you to live up to your fullest potential? 
Unlock and unblock.
Create the life you want and the life you deserve.
I believe in you. Do you believe in you?


Kelley Hoag