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As we begin the holiday season; a season when for many of us life seems to speed up and get a little more hectic, I think it’s important to remember that Capital EAP is there to provide you and your family with help, guidance and support.  So, before we get too deep into the festivities, here are some helpful reminders about what Capital EAP is, why you might contact us, and the many ways available to do so.

Why Capital EAP

I frequently have the pleasure of speaking directly to groups of employees about Capital EAP and what we do. It’s clear from the feedback that most everyone knows that Capital EAP provides free and confidential access to mental health counselors – as well as other services such as legal and financial support.

What most people don’t know is that you don’t need to be having a crisis to call. Sure, if you recognize that you need help with depression, anxiety, phobias, substance abuse or any debilitating mental or behavioral issue, we’re there to help. More than 1 in 4 people in the US experience these kinds of issues every year.

But something as common as stress or trouble sleeping, can also interfere with your happiness and physical health, and can negatively impact your relationships, job performance and overall quality of life. More than 77% of employees (3 out of 4) report that they regularly experience physical symptoms caused by stress – things like fatigue, headache, nausea, muscle tension and dizziness. This in turn can create behavioral issues such as irritability, excessive anger, feeling nervous, exhaustion and problems with mood.

While stressful situations happen, usually when we’re lying awake at night it’s not because of what’s happening at that moment, more often it’s simply what we’re thinking about.

Changing our thoughts, and how we respond to those thoughts (like not sleeping), is what counselors do best! The point is, you don’t need to be having a “break down” to call.  We can help with anything that’s distracting you from living well and being happy and healthy.

By calling Capital EAP for little things or just as problems begin, you can often avoid having those things turn into larger, more troubling and impactful events.

Making it easy

Coming in to see a counselor is not typically high on the list of “fun things to do today.” And scheduling an on-sight appointment for something small may not make a lot of sense. So Capital Counseling has many other options for getting help – both for the little and the big things.

Phone-based appointments

Capital EAP has five convenient locations across the Capital Region – Albany, Schenectady, Troy, Clifton Park and Saratoga Springs. Still, if your schedule makes coming to one of our offices inconvenient, you can have your appointment by phone. Though not always appropriate, phone counseling often makes making your appointment much easier!

Counseling on-demand

Scheduled appointments are the best way to address longer-term issues. But they’re not much help if you’re simply having a “bad day” and could use some advice!

During regular business hours, you can call Capital EAP for any reason and speak to a counselor right when you call. Our Care Counseling team is available to chat about anything that may be on your mind at the time. No appointment or crisis necessary.

Web-access to Counselors

One of the reasons that many people don’t seek the help of a counselor is embarrassment or just discomfort with talking about an issue. Many find writing their thoughts to be a less intimidating way to communicate.

Capital EAP members can send messages and get assistance for non-crisis issues through this website.  To use the Contact a Counselor feature, you’ll need to set up a user name and a password. And to do that, you’ll need your one-time organization access code.  Your HR department has that code, or you can get it from us by calling, by sending a message through our website, or via email at

24/7 Crisis

Lastly, Capital EAP is always available. In the event of a crisis or emergency, if you need a counselor, you can call us and get immediate assistance. Always.

There are already too many reasons folks will give for not contacting Capital EAP and asking for help. But few of them are worth the loss of happiness, the distractions and anxiety, the impact to our relationships and loved-ones, or the impact to our jobs. I hope, now that you know a little more about your Capital EAP benefit, you’ll have a few less reasons.