I have a vested interested in my practice beyond the fee for service. There’s all the gooey stuff and the real life survival stuff. The gooey stuff as I’m calling it, is just as real, it’s core to my being and if I didn’t live by it, I’d likely struggle with shame, self-criticism, self-loathing, etc. So the trick is it’s one and the same, but for the non-gooey person I’m separating it so you can gloss over the goo, if it doesn’t speak to you.
My goo interest:
A better world for you, is a better world for me.
I have the belief that if I help people make peace in their lives, live their best life, it will have a ripple effect that comes back to me. If anything else, it helps more mentally well persons be in the community and world at large. Further, as a mom with little people, that means that my kids get to be in that better world too. Big goo, mega corny, still real and me.
I’m self-fish, I love the feeling my work gives me.
I love seeing the transformation. I love walking the path with others. Whether it’s an individual struggling with anxiety, who learns new ways of being, or a couple who have now strengthen their relationship & family. The work, like life, has its rough and really rough moments but the good moments are worth incredible weights in gold. Being able to positively impact, feel partly responsible for, witness, whatever the role I got to play in therapy, gives me the good feels, makes me smile and I for sure take that home to my little family.
I live with trauma
I won’t say I’ve been through trauma, because it’s past and it’s recent, and sometimes it’s current. I use my own coping tools, sometimes wonderfully and other times with struggle. When I need to, I seek support, including my own therapy. Further, I know the repercussions of sharing my story and of myself with those not equipped to hold that space. I respect the risk it takes for clients to come to each session and be vulnerable. That being, I aim to create more spaces with the capacity to hold our not best self and the not best things that have happened.
The work makes me a better person:
I’m compelled to follow all the self-care, self-healing stuff I talk about, otherwise I’m a big hypocrite. So I’m constantly ensuring I’m working on me as much as I’m doing the work. Back to, I’m self-fish, but not too full of myself to not name it.
Hard reality stuff:
I’m a regulated professional
Even with an undergrad and masters degrees in social work, but wouldn’t be able to call myself a “social worker” or “psychotherapist”* without being registered. Those are what the R.S.W. letters after my name mean, Registered Social Worker.
As a regulated professional I’m held to educational qualifications, practice guidelines, ethics and continuing competence. It also means I’m accountable and risk being disciplined, suspended and/or losing licensure if I fail to up keep the expectations. Being regulated makes me consistently mindful of best practices, ethics and new developments in the field. I’d love to say this would be the case outside regulation, but life can get busy. However, knowing I’m risking the investment in my degrees, yearly professional development and livelihood, for sure keeps how I practice a priority.
When clients choose me as their therapist, it’s more than whether they pay a fee for service or not, it’s all of the above. I have a vested interest in the work, I want it to be a useful interaction, hopefully going beyond that to wildly positive experiences! I hope that in knowing there’s accountability and interests on my part, alleviates some of the fear to reaching out for needed support.
*Note Registered Social Workers are one of 6 regulated professionals permitted to perform psychotherapy & use the title psychotherapist in Ontario. The title and the act of psychotherapy are regulated in Ontario, acknowledging the risk and potential for harm within this act.