The University of Texas at Austin has several excellent suggestions for getting the most out of your counseling sessions, so the experience is as helpful as possible. Here’s a list of their recommendations:
• Identify goals. Think about what events are contributing to your current concerns. Before your session, write these down so you can explore this with your counselor. You should also think about your expectations prior to every appointment.
• Be an active participant. Therapy is teamwork. Be honest with your counselor about your thoughts and feelings so therapy can be most effective for you. Let them know how therapy is helping or not helping.
• Be patient. Change is a slow process that takes time and hard work. So be patient with yourself. In counseling, you’ll be learning many new skills, such as how to cope with your concerns in healthy ways, which require time to grasp and practice. Remember that any kind of growth doesn’t happen overnight.
• Ask questions. Don’t hesitate to ask your counselor any questions about the therapy process, the type of treatment you’re getting and any other services. If you’re unsure about something, ask away.
• Stick to the treatment. Your counselor will ask you to practice the skills you’ve learned in therapy in your daily life. It’s important to perform these activities in between sessions. If you’re having a tough time with this, talk to your counselor. Remember, they’re there to help you.
Additional source used: http://cmhc.utexas.edu/individualcounseling.html