Mental Health

How to find your specialist. How to find your specialist? | by Frieda Stern | Jan, 2024

How to find your specialist?

This question is more relevant than ever today, when the profession of a psychologist has become one of the most in demand, when on the vastness of social networks every second person calls himself a psychologist or, even worse, a psychotherapist.

It often turns out that most psychologists from the network do not even have the appropriate basic education, or have completed annual retraining courses of 240 hours.

In your opinion, is it possible in 240 hours to study the basics of anatomy and physiology of the central nervous system, clinical and neuropsychology, developmental and family psychology, basic psychological theories and psychotherapeutic approaches, features of the functioning of the family system and the psychology of mass communications, character accentuations, psychological disorders and many others? etc.? In my experience this is not possible.

Therefore, the first thing I pay attention to when choosing a psychologist is his education. And this is not only about having a diploma and the number of training hours. This is also about additional courses, and about training in a special approach, because a psychologist without an approach is like a plumber without a suitcase with tools.

The second important criterion, in my opinion, is whether a psychologist, and even more so a psychotherapist, has hours of personal therapy. For me, this is an integral criterion, because if a psychologist himself does not have or has not had experience in psychotherapy, then there is a very high risk that he will “treat about the client” and will work not with your request, but with his own.

And the third integral factor is your feelings in contact with a specialist. How do you like what the psychologist broadcasts to the world? How much do his judgments, thoughts, and statements resonate with you? How easy it is for you to communicate with him, to share your most intimate things with him. Listen to your feelings, this is very important!

As for experience, this is not the main criterion for me. I have met experienced psychologists with whom, for various reasons, I would definitely never work, and thoughtful, reflective specialists with little experience. Here it seems to me important that the psychologist openly declares his experience. This will help the client understand what he is getting into and decide whether he is ready to embark on this experiment.

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