Self-care is the buzzword in modern-day health and wellness, with a study by Vagaro showing that 75% of Americans claim that self-care practices are a powerful antidote to stress. Self-care goes beyond the feel-good factor; study after study has shown that it boosts confidence, enhances productivity, and makes people feel happier. The most common self-care practices are associated with taking care of the body, including exercising daily and consuming a healthy diet. However, for those battling common mental conditions such as stress and anxiety, there is one vital self-care strategy that can make all the difference when it comes to their progress: therapy. 

Mental Health Issues Are Prevalent

Close to 23% of all Americans face mental health issues in a given year, as per the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). Younger Americans report the highest rates of anxiety and depression. In October 2023, for instance, the Household Pulse Survey showed that some 48.4% of Americans aged 18 to 29 reported having anxiety or depression. In households with children and teens, adults, children, and teens can all be affected by similar issues, indicating the suitability of individual and/or family therapy.

What Is the Difference Between Individual and Family Therapy?

The choice of which type of therapy to opt for depends on the emphasis you wish to take. Individual therapies focus on a person’s struggles, while family therapy seeks to treat the problem holistically. If your issues are related to social interactions, communication problems, or the need for greater support, family therapy can be of help. This is also the case when maladaptive behaviors are prevalent in a family. As stated by non-profit mental health organization, Decade2Connect, when more than one family member has substance abuse or anger management issues, family therapy can be particularly useful. 

How Can Therapy Boost Self-Care?

Therapies such as cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), dialectical behavior therapy (DBT), and acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT) all aim to highlight the connections between how we think and feel, and the behaviors we take. For instance, if you have negative beliefs about yourself, then you may take part in self-sabotaging behaviors because you do not believe you can do better. Therapies like CBT can help you reframe your thoughts so that you can have healthier emotions and choose healthier behaviors. DBT is a particularly powerful way to deal with stress and tough emotions; it relies on mindfulness and distress tolerance to help you ride through the storm of emotions. ACT, meanwhile, encourages you to accept that things are difficult, while also tapping into your authentic values and making a commitment to changing the things you can for the better. It is easy to see how these therapies can contribute to making healthier choices such as eating right, exercising, and prioritizing your mental health.

Therapy is a powerful means to know yourself—how you think, feel, and behave. Through therapy, you can boost your self-belief as well as your confidence and self-worth. This, in turn, can inspire you to commit to life-changing choices, including the adoption of an effective self-care routine.