Episode 79 – Can Therapists’ Personal Experiences Be Helpful?

Play episode

Are there times when therapists’ personal experiences can be helpful when shared appropriately? Can these shared experiences help build a stronger therapist/client relationship? What if you had nothing in common instead?

In this episode of The Shrink Think podcast, Nathan and Aaron answer all these questions and more as they discuss if a therapist’s personal experience can be helpful to clients.

In This Episode


  • Are therapists’ personal experiences helpful to clients?
  • What if your therapist can’t relate to the situations you’re going to?

Are therapists’ personal experiences helpful to clients?

  • Yes! It can help normalize experiences that are otherwise traumatic for your client.
  • Being able to relate to what a client is feeling brings them a sense of comfort. They know they’re not alone.
  • If your therapist has been through the same experiences as you, it will give you hope to see how they’ve navigated/overcome it.

What if your therapist can’t relate to the situations you’re going to?

  • This can cause the client to feel weird/misunderstood sometimes.
  • But, the therapist is focusing on trying to understand your experience.
  • By allowing them to hear more about your life, the therapist will be able to figure out what’s pushing you to this point (i.e. life stress, isolation, etc.)

Useful Links

Thanks for Listening!

Feel free to leave a comment below or share this podcast on social media by clicking on one of the icons below. If you enjoyed this episode, please leave us a review on iTunes and subscribe to our podcast!

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.

Share this
Join the discussion

More from this show

Email Course

Episode 79