One of the greatest things about being a private practice therapist…. clients you haven’t worked with in years get back in touch for support!
As therapists, we have the honour of witnessing people’s deepest struggles, fears, emotions, hopes, dreams, strengths.
We don’t give advice. We ask questions. We provide reflections of what we are seeing. We track changes and remind people of how far they have come and what has helped in the past.
We sit with overwhelming grief, sadness, fear, hurt, anger and give people the chance to be fully heard, understood and validated.
We teach strategies to help people manage emotions, get clear on their values/goals, communicate their needs and set boundaries.
We provide support and accountability while people “experiment” with these new skills and behaviors. When they work, we celebrate, when the don’t, we tweak them until they do.
We then get to witness the smiles when the pain has passed. We see the pride (and sometimes shock) when the “experiments” work and positive change happens.
My goal, as a therapist, has always been to help people learn how to feel better so they no longer need my support. I focus on goals, strategies and processing emotions/behaviors that are keeping them stuck.
If I don’t see someone’s quality of life improving within a short period of time, then I either need to change strategies, or I need to help my client connect with someone who can help them in a different way.
Therapy is a big investment. An investment of time, money and energy. I think it’s a gift we give ourselves (myself included).
This means my clients tend to see positive changes in weeks/months, not years.
If I’ve done my job well, they no longer NEED to book sessions (want to is a different story:)
And while this makes me happy, I often wonder how their lives unfolded.
So I get happy when, years later, clients get in touch – either to refresh the skills they learned before, or because something new has come up and they want some support.
I honestly cannot imagine a better “job”.
And while I do all my work online now… this is a picture of my office back in 2011.
Want to try some of the coping strategies I’ve used with clients?
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Want to know more about my online therapy practice?
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