Takeaway: Finding a therapist in NYC can be a daunting task, especially if you’re new to the city or have never worked with a therapist before. With so many options available, it can be hard to know where to start. In this resource guide, we’ll share our top tips to help you feel confident about finding a good therapist in NYC. 

Making the choice to start therapy is a big decision. Maybe you’ve been struggling for a long time and finally made the commitment to take this next step, or maybe you’ve experienced some recent changes that you need help navigating. No matter what brought you to this point, it’s important to acknowledge the fact that it took courage and vulnerability to get here.

While making the decision to start is often the most difficult part, finding a therapist in NYC isn’t easy, either. There are many different factors to consider when choosing the right therapist for you, and you might feel overwhelmed or even defeated thinking about them all. It can be hard to know what you need, especially if this is your first time trying talk therapy.

If you’re feeling this way, know that you’re not alone. Many people struggle to find a therapist (especially in New York City), which is why we created this comprehensive guide to help demystify the process. As professional counselors ourselves, we understand all the hurdles our clients have overcome to finally connect with us.

In this post, we’ll lay out the entire process of finding a good therapist in NYC, including tips on what to ask in your consultation so you can feel confident that you’re choosing the therapist that’s right for you.

Let’s dive in.

Everything you need to know about finding a therapist in NYC

When researching mental health counselors in New York, it’s important to understand the logistics of the process itself and how to determine which therapist is right for you. Our guide has it all so you can feel prepared to make the best decision for your unique needs, goals, and values.

Why find a therapist in NYC?

If you’re feeling overwhelmed by finding a therapist in New York City, reconnecting with your “why” might help ground you. You likely have important reasons why you decided to start seeking therapy in the first place, and remembering those reasons can help fuel you throughout the process. If you need inspiration, here are a few common reasons why people work with mental health professionals.

Boost your mood

Many people seek therapy for its mental health benefits. Anxiety, trauma, and mood disorders like depression and postpartum depression are common issues that mental health counselors can effectively treat. While we’ve seen people recover from these challenges firsthand, you don’t have to take our word for it—these findings are backed by research, too.

Improve relationships

Relationship difficulties are a major reason why people seek therapy. After all, our connections with our family members, friends, and colleagues play an important role in our lives. Mental health providers can teach you new skills to communicate more effectively and connect with others in an authentic, meaningful way.

Get to know yourself better

Working with a mental health counselor can also help you improve your relationship with yourself. Therapy is a safe space where you can reflect on who you are and what you want without worrying about being judged. Your therapist will help you explore your identity, values, and goals. Plus, they’ll give you tangible strategies to be your most authentic self outside of your therapy sessions as well.

Feel more productive at work

For many people, work is a central piece of their identity. However, stressful life events and mental health issues can make it difficult to focus at work (and at home). According to the American Psychological Association (APA), working with a mental health counselor can improve a person’s work functioning.

Learn effective coping strategies

Even with therapy, you’re bound to encounter stress from time to time. There will always be another work presentation to prepare for, a fight with a partner, or a big decision to make. While therapy sessions can’t make those stressors go away, they can teach you new skills to navigate these challenges more easily.

Address physical symptoms of mental health problems

No, it’s not all in your head. Mental illness can come along with significant physical symptoms, too. The National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) identifies fatigue, headaches, muscle aches, and stomach problems as common features of anxiety disorders. Similarly, depression can come along with appetite issues, sleep problems, and physical pain. Treating the underlying mental health issue can help reduce these physical problems.

Where to look for mental health services in NYC

Now that you’ve reminded yourself why you started looking for mental health services in the first place, it’s time to start the process! There are plenty of resources and strategies you can use to find a therapist in New York City. Here are some of our top suggestions.

Use search engines

A simple Google search of “find a therapist NYC” can pull up plenty of tons of different options for mental health care in your area. It will take some time to sift through them, but this is a great way to start if you’re not sure exactly what you’re looking for. Using a more specific search term, like “anxiety therapist in New York” can help you narrow down your choices if you already know what you need.

Scan the directories

Many people also find a therapist by using directories like Psychology Today, TherapyDen, and GoodTherapy. These directories allow you to filter therapists by location, specialty, and whether or not they take your insurance. Again, combing through your options can take time, but getting selective with filters can help you pinpoint the therapists that might be the best fit for you.

Scroll through social media

Many therapists use social media platforms like Instagram and TikTok to market themselves and raise awareness about mental health. Scroll through your apps to see whether there are any mental health providers there whose approach resonates with you.

Get a referral

Asking for help is more than okay—which is what you’re learning by starting therapy! You probably already work with some trusted professionals, and they may have connections to mental health professionals with openings.

Consider asking medical doctors like fertility specialists and primary care physicians, as well as other professionals like massage therapists and acupuncturists. If you’re a student, you can also connect with your college counseling center. Some schools may even offer support to alumni.

Check with your insurance company

If you plan to use your health insurance plan to pay for therapy, you can ask your insurance company to connect you with an in-network therapist. Your health insurance carrier may also have a directory on its website with therapists who accept your benefits.

Ask around

If you feel comfortable, you can also ask people in your personal life for suggestions. Maybe your coworker who also struggled with fertility issues can connect you with the mental health professional they worked with. Maybe your sister-in-law found a group practice she raves about. Your loved ones know you best, so their input can be valuable.

Finding a therapist in NYC that’s right for you

Finding a good therapist in New York is about more than just who’s nearby and has openings. In order for counseling services to be as effective as possible, you’ll want to find the right therapist for your unique needs and situation. Here are a few things to consider when choosing which therapist to work with.


While logistics aren’t the most exciting part of finding a therapist, they’re essential to consider. Checking to make sure your logistical needs with what a prospective therapist can offer is an important first step in choosing a therapist.

Decide whether you want online therapy or in-person sessions. Many therapists (including ours!) offer both in-person and online therapy to best meet the needs of each individual client. However, some therapists only offer one or the other, so make sure to check when creating your shortlist.

You’ll also want to choose whether you want to use your insurance benefits or not. Our therapists accept insurance to give you an in-network experience. You may be able to use out-of-network benefits if you work with an out-of-network therapist (someone who doesn’t accept insurance), but this will depend on the specific provider.

Other logistics to consider include office location (if you want in-person sessions), whether the appointment times available work for your schedule, and other factors like whether you’ll need to change your work hours or get childcare during your scheduled time.

Type of therapist & treatment approach

You might be surprised to learn that there are many different types of therapists, including

  • Marriage and family therapists
  • Clinical social workers
  • Mental health counselors
  • Art therapists
  • Psychologists


While there are some other types, most therapists fall into one of these categories. Each kind of therapist has earned a master’s degree (at minimum), participated in thousands of hours of supervised practice, and passed an exam to become a licensed therapist in New York. While each type of therapist has a slightly different focus in their education, all are equipped to support clients through the therapeutic process.

Each individual therapist also uses different methods to help their clients. Some of these methods are taught in graduate school, while others require specialized training and certification. Here are a few examples of different therapeutic modalities that your potential therapist might use:

  • Psychodynamic therapy
  • Emotionally focused therapy (EFT)
  • Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT)
  • Dialectical behavior therapy (DBT)
  • Interpersonal therapy
  • Solution-focused brief therapy (SFBT)


Looking into the different therapy approaches can help you feel more prepared when choosing which therapist to work with.

Beyond the specific approach, you’ll also want to make sure that a prospective therapist can support you with the type of challenges you’re experiencing, whether that’s substance abuse, life transitions, self-esteem, relationship difficulties, mental health conditions like depression and anxiety, or something else entirely.


Finding a personality match is just as important (if not even more important) than finding a therapist who aligns with your logistical and mental health needs. Building a strong therapeutic relationship is a cornerstone of effective mental health care, so it’s essential to find someone you feel comfortable talking to.

Of course, it’s hard to determine this before you actually meet each other. You can likely gather some information about the therapist from their website or directory listing. Do they have an eclectic, artsy vibe? Do they feel more clinical and direct? Pay attention to the types of therapists you gravitate toward.

Once you’ve narrowed down which therapists you feel drawn toward, you can reach out to schedule a consultation call. Speaking with each professional directly can help you get a better sense of whether you might be a good match for each other.

What to ask about in your initial consultation with a therapist in NYC

Scheduling consultation calls with a few different therapists can help you make an informed decision about who you want to work with. These calls are usually free, and they’re a great opportunity to ask any lingering questions, learn more about the therapy process, and get a feel for your potential therapist.

During the call, it’s important to ask about logistics like scheduling availability. If you can only meet during the evenings but a therapist only has openings in the morning, you might have to reconsider. Or, you can decide whether you can move your schedule around. You’ll also want to give the therapist a brief explanation of what you’re struggling with to make sure that they are equipped to support you.

Other than that, the consultation is a time for you to decide whether you connect with the therapist. While it will take time to build a relationship together, you can often get a feel for whether or not you’ll gel with each other right away. Pay attention to how you feel during the call and remember that it’s always okay to ask for more time to make your decision.

Looking for a therapist in NYC (or anywhere in New York State)? We’re here for you.

Our professional counselors can support you with a wide range of different issues. We’re available for in-person sessions at our office in Midtown Manhattan, and we also provide online therapy for individuals throughout New York State. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help and to set up your complimentary consultation. We look forward to connecting with you!