I completely understand, sometimes its just all to much. Definitely been there. First, you said you want to see a psychiatrist or psychologist. They each do different things. You might be able to narrow donw your choices right there.
A psychiatrist is a medical doctor. Psychiatrists rarely do therapy these days, I've never met one who does. What they do mostly is prescribe meds. You go in for a short appt, about 15minutes every few weks, or even months, and they discuss medication and may change it or work on the dose.
A psychologist has a Ph.D. They can not prescribe meds in most states. They do therapy. With a psychologist, you generally have an hour long appt (or a "therapy hour- about 50minutes). Some people go every other week, but once a week is not unusual, and some people go even more frequently depending on the therapist and your needs. There are many different "types" of therapy, but the gist is that you sit and talk about your problems, and try to come up with solutions or work through your feelings. Don't worry so much about what type of therapy a therapist practices, research generally shows that the biggest factor in recovery is not therapy type, but that you have a good relationship with the therapist- you feel they are warm, caring, and empathetic.
In many areas BOTH psychiatrists AND psychologists can give a diagnosis, if you want one.
There are also assorted other professionals who do talk therapy- MFTs (marriage and family therapists) , MSWs (masters of social workers), LPCs (licensed professional counselors) etc. Most of these do not have a doctorate, but more usually a masters. They also may have more restrictions on their scope of practice- ie, they may not be able to diagnose, or do certain kinds of psychological testing.
In any case, the first question is, do you want meds, or therapy, or both? That should help narrow down the field some for you. I think many people start with counseling, and then if they feel they need meds later, their counselor often has recommendations for psychiatrists in the area.
Would it help to take very small steps? When I get really depressed, I find its sometimes easier to break a task down into tiny parts. Maybe you could start by deciding what sort of practitioner you want. Then perhaps, make it a goal to look in the phone book one day. Or run a quick internet search. Thats it no calling, just looking at names. Then make it your goal to call you insurance and find out your coverage, and if they have restrictions on who you can see (some may have in-network providers, others may cover psychologists, but not MSWs, etc) Then maybe it make it your goal to call just one practitioner, one a day, one a week, whatever you can manage.
Thats what helps me. Sometimes it takes me a week or more to do the smallest step. But at least it gets done, and then I've started the process and can move on to the next step- which might also take awhile, but any forward motion is good. :)I try not to get down on myself, if I didnt accomplish it this week, well there's always next week. If I skip a day in my one-a-day call goal, hey, its just a day, I can try again tomorrow. Having little goals makes the process seem less daunting overall, and those I actually do something on it, instead of being paralyzed and doing nothing at all.
Its also worth saying, some really great therapists do not have a huge internet presence. I found my own therapist through word of mouth, he doesn't have a website or any big listing. I know a few other great therapists in my town who are the same. If you have a good relationship with your doctor, or know folks who have been in therapy and you feel comfortable talking to them, they might be good resources to ask to help you find local names as well.