Telecounseling allows people access to professional counseling services, even when they can't get to a therapist's office. Many people have started taking advantage of telecounseling services during the COVID-19 pandemic, but remote therapy can offer benefits outside of social distancing. Many people find telecounseling a more convenient way to get the mental health care they need. Here are some of the ways you can make telecounseling work for you:

1. Find somewhere private to chat

Privacy is a foundational aspect of the client-therapist relationship. When people attend therapy, they're trusting their therapists with their innermost thoughts and feelings. Confidentiality allows a strong rapport based on trust to develop. A therapist's office is a safe and private place to talk. When you choose telecounseling treatment, you'll need to attain privacy for yourself. For the best results, start every telecounseling appointment by finding a quiet place to chat where you won't be disturbed.

2. Schedule your telecounseling appointments for the same time every week

Most people choose to see their therapists at least once a week to start. Having a standing appointment for the same time each week can help you integrate therapy into your weekly routine, which will allow you to prepare yourself in advance. You can take advantage of the benefits of routine with telecounseling services as well. Schedule your telecounseling appointments for the same time every week to make your sessions an integral part of your life.

3. Use the technology that is most comfortable for you

Telecounseling utilizes technology to connect therapists with their patients. Many therapists prefer to offer treatment through video calls when possible, but some patients feel uncomfortable with this form of communication. Other patients lack access to webcams or cellphones that offer video chat capabilities. In this case, a phone call is a valid alternative. You can have a conversation with your therapist to determine what type of technological communication is appropriate for your goals and treatment.

4. Discuss the duration of your telecounseling treatment up front

Finally, you should talk with your therapist about the scope of your treatment up front. Few people continue seeing the same therapist throughout their lives. Many therapists offer results-oriented therapy that seeks to help patients resolve specific problems. You can get an idea of what you can expect by discussing the length of your treatment during your first telecounseling session. If you'd like to transition to in-person appointments in the future, you can also mention that during your chat.