Episode 63 – What’s the Point of Homework in Therapy?

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What is the purpose of homework in therapy? Why do therapists give clients homework? Do you have to do it if you’re a client, or can you skip out and still get the most out of therapy?

In this episode of The Shrink Think podcast, Nathan and Aaron answer all these questions and more as they share their thoughts on homework in therapy.

In This Episode


  • What is the difference between self help and therapy?
  • Why would I go to therapy with all of these resources available to me?
  • How do I know therapy is for me?

What is homework in therapy?

  • Journaling
  • Worksheets
  • More formal assignments: teamwork, talk to a specific person, etc.

Why do therapists give homework?

  • You need to invest more than one hour a week in therapy.
  • The goal is to replicate behaviors, so it helps you document actions that you take to change.
  • It breaks things down, step-by-step, on how to make those changes.

How do therapists use your assignments in sessions?

  • It helps the therapist understand what’s happening in your mind by having it documented
  • Therapists help reflect your thoughts and behaviors back to you
  • It gives therapists an insight into what you think about after they give you information during a session.

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Thanks for Listening!

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aaron potratz and nathan hawkins therapists standing smiling

Meet Nathan & Aaron

Nathan Hawkins and Aaron Potratz are both licensed therapists and clinical supervisors in the state of Oregon. They each own their own private group counseling practices and co-own a third group practice together. Nathan and Aaron have been in the field since 2004 and 2007, respectively, and have over 100,000 hours of therapy experience each. On their show, they discuss facing fears and common challenges from a therapist’s point of view, imparting wisdom and humanity to their viewers. Along the way, they hope to not only share their insights but bring some light-hearted entertainment to make the journey easier.

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Episode 63