According to www.mentalhealth.gov, "The Affordable Care Act will provide one of the largest expansions of mental health and substance use disorder coverage in a generation, by requiring that health insurance plans on the Health Insurance Marketplaces cover mental health and substance use disorder services." In addition, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports, "Employment of mental health counselors and marriage and family therapists is projected to grow 29 percent from 2012 to 2022." This means that if there were ever a time to enter the psychology and mental health field, it's now.
Randi Miller, of Self Esteem Treatment Center, is a licensed psychologist in the Baltimore area with a Ph.D. in clinical psychology, and offers some great advice on how to succeed in this growing field.
How does your education relate to your current role?
"Besides my Ph.D. in clinical psychology, I am also a certified Imago singles therapist. My current role involves providing individual and couples counseling to a diverse population. I've learned how to conceptualize each client from a wide variety of perspectives, so that therapy can be multidimensional and thorough. My psychology education exposed me to different theoretical approaches to treatment, so that my intervention can be specifically tailored. Everything I learned in school, from theories of psychotherapy to statistics is still useful and relevant to psychology today."
How has your education contributed to your success?
"I have been exposed to teachers and supervisors who taught theory, but also demonstrated empathy, compassion, and how to see the client holistically, rather than as a diagnosis or illness. Being able to combine clinical psychology with behavioral health, helped me work with clients with mental distress as a result of physical infirmity, and whose mental illness has created health impairments. Education has enabled me to create a way of providing psychotherapy services that empower people and help them feel better."
What advice can you offer others going into this field?
"Take advantage of every opportunity to meet with different patient populations in a variety of settings, and to get as much supervision from different supervisors you meet. It's important to know yourself well, what your own pain and suffering is, so that your personal issues don't invade the work. It's important to have a niche or a passion to stand out in today's market."
Sara Lugardo is a professional writer out of Chicago, Illinois. She has a bachelor's in communication and is currently working on her master's. Her work can be found on Examiner.com.
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