As we prepare to welcome another new year, many people are starting to think about their New Year’s resolutions. And especially as we enter a new decade, it might have you feeling the pressure more than ever to really start 2020 with a bang.
As a dedicated health professional, one thing always top of mind is what makes a good psychotherapist, and what can you do to become a better one?
Resolutions for Mental Health Providers
While you might be thinking about your resolutions for your personal life, there is also great benefit to making a separate set of resolutions for your professional life.
As an effective therapist, you know improving in your work correlated with improving the results seen in your clients’ lives.
When you start to think about your New Year’s resolutions here are a few to consider adding to your list:
Put a higher priority on your own mental health.
You spend around 40 hours of your week focusing on the mental health of others. But do you still make time to focus on your own? And, if so, do you make enough time for it?
We all perform better in our personal and professional lives when we are mentally healthy. While focusing on your clients is important, it is also essential to remember that you are human too, and by improving yourself and your work, you are also helping them more as a result.
Enable clients to help themselves.
You likely already incorporate this into your practice by teaching clients coping skills and practices they can do at home.
But it is also important you keep clients up to date with other tools that can help them track this progress and keep themselves accountable, such as a reporting platform.
Connect with others in the field.
You learn so much from your own personal experiences in the profession, and others can also learn so much from your experiences – and vice versa.
This upcoming year make a point to network with other mental health providers and share with and learn from each other’s experiences. You might be surprised how so many of your struggles and questions your share.
Participate in training.
Your practice is always evolving, make a goal to achieve better results with the people you serve.
For example, our FIT eLearning is an easily adaptable training that can help you take your practice to the next level through interactive lessons.
Outline clear goals and expectations for your business.
You are more successful when you have a goal or a bottom line in mind. This should change every so often, and the start of a new year is a great time to readdress these items.
What Makes a Good Psychotherapist?
A good psychotherapist has many different traits, and good communication is one of the main ones. Communicating various things with your clients in different ways is key to your success and their success.
As a psychotherapist, you should always be looking for ways to improve. As you start the new year and new decade, try incorporating some of these things that make a good psychotherapist into your practice:
Gather formal client feedback on outcome and alliance.
Studies have shown that utilizing formal feedback directly correlates with the success of a psychotherapist.
You don’t know what you don’t know, and nobody can tell you how to improve your practice quite like the people actually receiving your services and analyzing if they’re working.
Have conversations with clients about the meanings behind their scores.
Data can be intimidating if you don’t know what you’re looking at. And it can be useless if you don’t know what to do with it.
Talk to your clients about the meaning behind their scores – why they got them, how to change them, and what this means for their next steps.
Identify when clients’ trajectories are off track.
As their mental health provider, it is your job to point out when their trajectories are off track, as they might not be able to do it on their own.
By using outcome reporting with real-time results and feedback, you are able to quickly and efficiently monitor your clients’ trajectories and results and make suggestions based on that.
Improve skills in generating honest client feedback.
You might think you are asking your clients for feedback, but they might not see it that way. Or, you might be asking them but not in a way they feel comfortable being honest.
Gathering client feedback, specifically honest client feedback, is vital to your growth and success.
It is not only about what you ask for, but how you ask for it.
Establish your professional baseline and measure incremental improvements in practice goals.
How do you know if what you are doing is working if you aren’t comparing your data to your goals and the tactics you need to complete to reach those goals?
Earlier, we noted that one of your resolutions should be to outline goals for your practice, and this is exactly why.
What are your plans for 2020?
If you are interested in learning more about MyOutcomes, reach out to our team today.