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Is Online Counseling Right for Me?

Updated: Mar 26



In this busy, stressful world, it can be tough to feel like you have the time or ability to address things that are important to you, your relationship, and your career. Yet it's so vital to do so. For many, online counseling - which offers flexibility, anonymity, and key financial benefits - is the missing piece when it comes to deciding to make a change.


How is online counseling different from traditional therapy?

In traditional therapy, you visit a therapist in an office, sit in a chair facing them, and complete the session of therapy in the allotted time. Many people benefit from this type of therapy - to be in a room with a kind and caring therapist to explore their feelings and attain goals.


You might be wondering if this same safe feeling can be replicated online, and it can be. You have the opportunity to connect with therapists to decide who you may "vibe" with best, who makes you feel comfortable and offers the same knowledge and expertise as a traditional therapist. Pick out 2-3 therapists and schedule a consultation with each to see who is the best fit for you.


TIP: Be sure to look for a licensed therapist through directories such as:


What would I need to get started?

In order to connect over video for our appointments, you will need a computer, tablet or mobile device with video/audio capabilities with internet capability. I will provide you with a unique, HIPAA secure, link to meet via SimplePractice (an online practice management system).


If you have used FaceTime, Skype, or Zoom then rest assure that you are tech-savvy enough to receive online counseling.


Using SimplePractice you can:

  • Complete new client paperwork online

  • Send secure messages

  • Receive documents and handouts

  • Pay online


What's a typical online session like?

You will want to find a quiet, confidential place in your home to connect for your appointment. One that has comfortable seating, good lighting, and space for you to have tissues, pen, and paper, or a beverage nearby. Most online counseling sessions are 60 minutes, however, I can adjust to 30 minutes or 90 minutes to meet your needs.


At the time of your appointment, we'll use the link to connect for counseling which is HIPAA secure. I will ask you your location for safety purposes as I am not in the same physical space as you. Next, we will begin our session similar to traditional therapy - I am here to listen without judgment, provide strategies and techniques that address your unique concerns.


Together, we'll create goals and I'll recommend the frequency of appointments, provide homework in between sessions (if you're up for it), and check-in appointments after therapy conclude to prevent relapse.


Terminology

You might hear terms used interchangeably: online counseling, telehealth, virtual counseling, e-therapy, teletherapy, or cyber-counseling to describe mental health services and support over the Internet.


I am a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor (LPCC-S) and Board-Certified TeleMental Health (BC-TMH) provider, based in Cleveland, Ohio. I provide online counseling to residents across the state of Ohio. My specialties include working with couples to increase their emotional connection and with individuals in awakening and igniting their purpose.


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© 2020 Center for Heart Intelligence LLC | an Ohio Telehealth Practice 
Meagan Prost, LPCC-S, BC-TMH
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