Therapist Match: Finding the Right Fit and What Questions to Ask

Here are some ideas for your search:

  • When searching for a therapist in your area, look at the miles you are willing to travel (this could be 10, 15, 20, 30 or more). If you aren’t willing to travel far don’t put in miles further than what you are looking to travel to or see someone.
  • If you live in a small community and are worried about seeing someone in your town that you know try to look for a therapist in a nearby town or a bigger city. All therapists in the state can see you as long as you remain in the state through video sessions.
  • If you want to see a therapist who specializes in a certain area you should choose that area to see who comes up.
  • Look up the different types of therapy a therapist might use.
    • These types of therapy might be:
      • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
      • Dialectical Behavioral Therapy
      • Exposure & Response Prevention
      • Somatic Therapy
  • Take a look at their website and see what they also say about themselves. Take a look at their blog posts, what their office space looks like, and even see if they tell you about their process for new clients. You can really tell a lot about a therapist and their website by just taking a look.

 Once I find someone I think I like: What should I ask?
When you find a therapist who seems like an actual match for what you are looking for, I would reach out and either schedule a call to get to know them a little or schedule a session with them. When you call let them know what you are looking for, what time of day works best for a call back, and how they can reach you.

When you get to your call time or are coming in for a session here’s what I would ask the therapist to get to know them and see if they would be a
good fit:

  • What is your specialty?
    • Get a sense of their background, how they practice, and even
      what type of therapy they use.
  • Can you tell me how long clients usually see you for?
    • As a therapist we should have a rough idea of an appropriate
      course of therapy.
  • How long have you worked in the field?
  • How many clients have you had with similar concerns?
  • How often do you anticipate seeing me?
  • How do we set counseling goals?
  • What does a session look like?
  • What degree do you have?
  • How can I best make progress in therapy?

What do I do if I don’t think we’re a good fit?

If it isn’t a good fit then it isn’t a good fit. As a therapist, I would rather have a client tell me that they don’t think we’re a good fit than continue through sessions and not engage with me in sessions. If you feel like the therapist you have chosen isn’t a good fit for you here is an example of something to say: “I wanted to thank you for meeting with me. I appreciate the time you have taken. At this time, I don’t think it’s a good fit and I was wondering if you have a recommendation of someone who you think I might work better with?” You don’t have to stay with a therapist because you’ve chosen them and went through the process. You do have the choice to find someone that works with what you are looking for. As a therapist, it is also my responsibility to know when I don’t think it’s a good fit and to recommend that you find another therapist who is. As a therapist I would also make sure that I provide you with referrals to another therapist that I think is a good match. Finding the right fit doesn’t have to be difficult or hard. You just need to ask the questions, know what you are looking for, and try it out to see if the therapist is a good fit for you.


Jordan White is a licensed clinical social worker at Thrive Ahead Co., located in the Bucktown neighborhood. Jordan serves clients not only in Bucktown, but Chicago, and surrounding suburbs and offers 10 years of experience as a social worker and is a Gottman-Trained Couples Therapist. Jordan is experienced with diverse age groups and cultural backgrounds, making him adept at providing support in various areas. His specialties include offering support for anxiety & depression, ADHD, executive functioning, OCD, perfectionism, adoptee work, couples & relationships, body image, life transitions & trauma work. Schedule A Consultation Call Today Here



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