It’s time to look forward to 2021. Entering a new year is always exciting — full of goals, possibilities, and new adventures. But this year feels a little different for everyone. Some may almost hesitate to look forward to a new year after wrapping up one like 2020. We want to help you and your clients overcome that reluctance in practical ways.
Lessons learnt in 2020
In our last article, we covered what counsellors learnt in 2020, and what they can expect to take into 2021. Here’s what we found:
- Be flexible: Meet clients where they are. Whether that be in-person sessions, video calls or jumping on a phone call.
- Virtual counselling is here to stay: The COVID-19 pandemic brought to light just how critical technology continues to be in keeping us connected. Now that counsellors and their clients have discovered that virtual therapy is possible and effective, there’s no going back. The convenience and accessibility is important to clients.
- Digital tools are a necessity: As the industry and it’s clients embrace virtual counselling, digital tools like Therachat are essential to ensure clients are staying on-track between sessions and meeting their goals.
For the full breakdown and more details, read the article on our blog.
How to look forward to 2021
For many, this year felt unpredictable, stagnant, and stressful — but it also came with many lessons. As we enter the new year, many clients, and even counsellors, may be concerned about similar themes. Here is what we expect will come up, and how to maintain a positive outlook.
Focus on what you DID do.
Not on what you didn’t. Many clients are struggling with the fact that they didn’t accomplish as much as they would have liked to. Maybe there were goals that were glossed over, or impossible to reach given the circumstances. Let us be loud and clear when we say: that’s completely okay. The world was not in its ‘normal’ state this year, so it’s unfair to expect ‘normal’ levels of productivity from everyone. Know that while wanting to meet all desired goals is great, it’s perfectly fine to not have met every single one — in a global crisis, no less. Just surviving and getting through the year is more than enough, and clients should be proud of themselves for that.
Thank yourself for how far you’ve come
This year hasn’t been easy. Maybe your clients didn’t get to do absolutely everything they wanted to. Maybe they had to cancel plans, or grieve losses. But the sheer fact that we all made it to the end of the year is an accomplishment in itself. Perhaps paused growth in specific areas left more room for clients to grow in others. For example, if they didn’t get their dream job, but they developed healthy coping mechanisms they could reach for in times of stress — that’s something to be celebrated.
Don’t put pressure on this upcoming year
While the world is moving towards normalcy, it’s not all the way there yet. And it won’t happen overnight. Instead, expect a slow and gradual shift to what we’re used to. That being said, encourage clients not to put too much pressure on this upcoming year, and themselves, to pile on goals for 2021. Remember that not every year has to start with a bang — taking slow and steady strides is an amazing first step. That way, clients can get really clear on what they really want to accomplish rather than rushing into half-baked aspirations.
Use technology to your advantage
As we enter a new year, counsellors can embrace digital tools to keep their clients on track throughout 2021. Therachat is a digital homework app that counsellors can use to support their clients from a distance. With innovative features like daily homework reminders, skill-building activities, emotion tracking, and mindfulness exercises, counsellors and their clients are always connected. Support your clients as they meet their goals, with Therachat.
Moving into the new year
For some, entering a new year feels exciting, with the promise of new experiences and opportunities. For others, it can feel stressful like a lot of pressure. As you and your clients look forward to 2021, we hope these practical tips can help remove negative thoughts and bring a sense of calm.