MFT, LCSW, PsyD, PhD - what does it mean when looking for a therapist? Sure, a set of letters after a name lends confidence to anyone who is doing research on potential therapist options, but navigating the various acronyms can make an already-scary process feel down right overwhelming. Finding the right mental health care professional is easier when you understand what these letters mean when it comes to their licensing and credentials. Above all, it’s essential that you find someone that you feel comfortable with - their training is only the beginning.
First of all, it’s important to remember that all these accreditations serve an important purpose. Going to see a therapist is very different than talking to a friend -- the education a therapist receives allows him or her to better engage with clients to understand their full perspectives and pull appropriate tools to address those needs and create lasting change.
A rigorous licensing process ensures practitioners have the appropriate training to best serve your needs. Plus, it’s important to know that this (or any other) medical professional has been properly evaluated and adheres to your state’s regulations in the field in terms of competency, qualifications, ethics, and business practices.
Unfortunately, that’s where things get complicated. The National Alliance on Mental Health explains that many types of mental health care professionals can help you achieve your therapy goals. They operate under a variety of job titles—including counselor, clinician, therapist or something else—based on the treatment setting. And variations exist state-by-state (the points below are most relevant for California, where reflect is headquartered).
To practice, clinicians must hold a Master’s degree (Master of Science or Master of the Arts) or Doctorate (PhD, PsyD) in a mental health-related field such as psychology, counseling psychology, marriage or family therapy, among others.
Here, the licensure and certification designations can include a variety of additional acronyms to indicate specifics which can vary by specialty and state. Examples of licensure include: LPCC Licensed Professional Counselor, LMFT Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, and LCADAC, Licensed Clinical Alcohol & Drug Abuse Counselor.
The most common in California are Marriage and Family Therapist (MFT), Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW), Psychologist (PsyD or PhD), and Psychiatrist (MD).
Confused? We’re here to help, so let’s take a closer look at some of the most common acronyms and what they mean.
MARRIAGE AND FAMILY THERAPIST (MFT, LFMT, or AMFT)
Professionals with this designation hold a Master's degree in Marriage and Family Therapy and/or Psychology. While they cannot prescribe medications, many will work with a psychiatrist (M.D.) who does medication management as part of the overall treatment plan.
Those that are licensed (indicated by the titles MFT or LMFT) have also completed a minimum of at least 1,000 (depending on the state) hours of supervised experience, plus passed the state board licensing exams. California requires 3,000 hours of supervised training, which can take 3 to 5 years -- or more!
Licensure is required for an individual to work independently as an MFT. Upon licensure, MFTs have the freedom to establish their own private practices.
You can learn more about California MFT’s through one of the state’s most popular organizations, CAMFT which helps support its more than 32,000 members and educate the overall community.
LICENSED CLINICAL SOCIAL WORKER (LCSW, ACSW)
A social worker is trained in psychotherapy and helps individuals deal with a variety of mental health and daily living problems to improve overall functioning. A social worker usually has a master's degree in social work and has studied sociology, growth and development, mental health theory and practice, human behavior/social environment, psychology, research methods. There are a wide variety of specializations the Licensed Clinical Social Worker can focus on. These include specialties such as: working with mental health issues, substance abuse, public health, school social work, medical social work, marriage counseling or children and family therapy.
LICENSED PROFESSIONAL CLINICAL COUNSELOR (LPCC)
Licensed Professional Clinical Counselors provide mental health care to millions of Americans and are trained to work with individuals, families, and groups. Their level of training is on par with Licensed Marriage and family counselors and clinical social workers. The first professional clinical counselors became licensed in the state of California in 2012.
"While the LPCC licensure designation is new to the state of California, Licensed Professional Counselors have a long history and account for a majority of licensure types in many other states. We look forward to continuing to educate the public about changing landscape of mental health in the State of California." said Kenneth Edwards, LPCC and Executive Director of the California Association for Licensed Professional Clinical Counselors.
LICENSED vs. ASSOCIATE
Those who have not completed their licensure process and are still working on their 1,000 to 3,000 of training hours are called Associates (designated with the “A” rather than “L” in credentials). Associates can be found in MFT, CSW, PCC and PsyD capacities, among others. Without licensure, a person can only do counseling while under the supervision of other licensed professionals or through a supervising organization.
However, it’s important to note that because of California’s extensive licensing requirements, the quality of care for those working with Associates vs. Licensed therapists may not differ (our founder, Jonathan, actually works with an AMFT under supervision). Studies also show that outcomes do not vary based on years of experience or whether a therapist is an Associate or licensed. Outside of reflect, many associate hourly rates can be equal or greater to some licensed therapists.
PhD and PsyD
PhD degrees are awarded in social work, counselor education, and marriage and family therapy. A Doctor of Philosophy degree in Psychology prepares the mental health care provider to conduct independent research and to provide professional services (consultation, assessment, diagnosis, therapy). To use the title "Psychologist," individuals must have graduated specifically from a Psychology program and meet their state requirements and obtain a license to practice Psychology.
A Doctor of Psychology degree (PsyD) focuses more on clinical practice and less on research. Like a PhD in Psychology, the Doctor of Psychology degree (PsyD) prepares students to practice psychology in a wide range of clinical settings. However, this particular degree requires fewer research and statistics courses and thus takes less time.
Psychologists and psychiatrists hold the highest levels of education and certifications due to the rigorous requirements of the medical field. The American Psychological Association explains that after graduation from college, psychologists spend an average of seven years in graduate education training and research before receiving a doctoral degree.
As part of their professional training, they must complete a supervised clinical internship in a hospital or organized health setting and at least one year of post-doctoral supervised experience before they can practice independently in any health care arena. It's this combination of doctoral-level training and a clinical internship that distinguishes psychologists from many other mental health care providers. Psychologists must be licensed by the state in which they practice. Licensure laws are intended to protect the public by limiting licensure to those persons qualified to practice psychology as defined by state law. In most states, renewal of this license depends upon the demonstration of continued competence and requires continuing education.
Because a psychiatrist is licensed to write prescriptions, they are Medical Doctors who have graduated from medical school and completed a residency program in psychiatric care. Some psychiatrists are board-certified, which means that they have passed written and oral board exams in addition to medical school and psychiatric residency. Many psychiatrists do not offer counseling services and will simply prescribe medication and ongoing medication management and offer referrals to therapists with who they have a working relationship.
Apart from ensuring that your potential therapists are qualified, it’s essential that you ultimately find the right fit with the person who will be helping you manage your mental health. One of the best questions to ask yourself is this: do you feel comfortable opening up with this particular individual? There should be a level of ease, even with difficult or awkward topics. We want you to feel good about your choice, because it’s crucial to your journey.
In the Bay Area? Let reflect help you find a trusted mental health professional by connecting you to our data-driven algorithm to find a local therapist well-suited to your own unique needs. In fact, ninety percent of those who try reflect find a therapist they like - which means that you can take a lot of guesswork out of an otherwise daunting process.
If you’ve made the decision to look into therapy, you might be asking yourself, “where do I even begin?” Well, you’re not alone. The process of finding the right therapist and the right therapeutic approach can feel overwhelming. In fact, you may begin not knowing that the therapeutic approach will impact the progress you make in therapy. Why? Mental health professionals operate from a variety of techniques (and styles), and it’s important to explore the systems of treatment as you begin the task of selecting a therapist. Let’s take a deeper look at the therapeutic approaches most commonly used so that you can make an informed decision.
Start the process by asking yourself what you are expecting from therapy. Would you prefer an analytical process, in which you’ll learn techniques for changing behaviors, or simply be able to talk freely with gentle guidance and acceptance? Therapy is a highly personal process, and naturally, you’ll want a therapist that’s most effective for you.
Many therapists will blend various therapeutic techniques to customize an approach that works for each client. Your therapy should feel comfortable to you - understanding how different therapies operate will help you determine how to meet those needs.
Common Therapeutic Approaches
COGNITIVE BEHAVIOR THERAPY
Cognitive Behavior Therapy (also called CBT) is highly analytical and examines the impact of both your thoughts and your actions. The cognitive side centers on how thoughts influence mood and actions, while the behavioral aspect focuses on actions and learning strategies to modify problematic behaviors. It’s based on understanding your thought process or behaviors in the present and identifying how dysfunctional patterns in these areas may contribute to a larger life problem. By gaining awareness of these thought patterns, you can work with your therapist to change them. Cognitive behavioral therapists work on the premise that you can change your feelings by changing your thoughts and actions.
If you find yourself troubled by negative self-talk, self-defeating habits or automatic responses that don’t match your actual goals, CBT might work well for you - it teaches you to recognize these patterns as they emerge and make different choices. The "behavior" component refers to learning and practicing more productive responses to distressing circumstances or feelings, such as relaxing and breathing deeply instead of hyperventilating when in an anxiety-provoking situation. Sessions are highly structured - you and your therapist work together as a team to identify and change faulty thoughts and actions. In turn, you’ll be encouraged to work on it daily with homework assignments when you’re not in session – say, keeping a journal of negative thoughts, their context and what triggered them. The work you do in between sessions is key to your progress.
Behavioral Therapy adopts the philosophy that, if you change your problematic behavior, you will see a positive change in thoughts, feelings, and interactions with others. The idea is to change your actions to get a different result that’s more in line with your goals. Healthline defines this therapeutic approach as one that seeks to identify and help change potentially self-destructive or unhealthy behaviors. It functions on the idea that all behaviors are learned and that unhealthy behaviors can be changed. The focus of treatment is often on current problems and how to change them.
This concept uses positive reinforcement and motivation to pinpoint and improve problematic patterns of behavior. It's common for behavioral therapy to be incorporated into sessions when working with interpersonal, relationship, and emotional issues. Many times, your therapist will guide you with relaxation and “pause” techniques (such as breathing exercises) so that you can take a moment and make a better choice of words or actions when you are in the midst of your distressing situation. Here is where you’ll find Anger Management Therapy, Conflict-Resolution Therapy, and various treatments for impulse control and addiction.
For a deep dive into your “whys”, Psychodynamic Therapy focuses on how life events, desires, and past and current relationships affect your feelings and the choices you make. This therapeutic approach is based on the idea that our behavior and feelings as adults are rooted in our childhood experiences. Relationships (particularly parenting) are of primary importance in determining how we feel and behave. You’ll be going all the way back to the beginning when working within this concept. In this type of therapy, you and your therapist identify the compromises you've made to defend yourself against painful thoughts or emotions - much of which you may not realize you are doing. Psychodynamic therapies focus on this unconscious process by having you talk freely about your thoughts or feelings, and it aims to delve into memories that might yield a better understanding of present problems.
Humanistic Therapy is a client-centered approach that emphasizes unconditional acceptance from the therapist and the free expression of the client. With this approach, you are encouraged to openly express what is affecting you as you work with the therapist to find meaning and understanding of your emotions, without as much analysis. The therapist provides little authority or direction. Instead, he or she offers subtle guidance and encourages the client to take control of their destiny. This therapeutic approach is helpful when untangling issues with gender identity, LGBTQ lifestyle, or any other situation in which you could be questioning yourself and your value. It’s also very helpful for grief counseling and coping with a loss of any kind. Because the therapist focuses on you and your feelings, you’ll be able to talk freely and feel validated and accepted.
No matter which therapeutic approach sounds most appropriate for you, the match between you and the therapist may be as important as the strategy he or she uses. That is - you want to feel comfortable and put your mental health in the right person’s hands. Let reflect help you connect with your best match, with the top network of trusted professionals in the Bay Area. Our 55-point matching system helps us to get a good therapeutic match the first time. 90% of reflect therapy clients find a therapist they like and we are ready to help you find the right match for you as well.
As the conversation continues to grow around the importance and availability of quality mental health resources, many strides have already been taken to raise awareness by corporations and community members alike. May is Mental Health Month, and in fact, this year marks the 70th anniversary of this vital movement. That’s quite a milestone - one that is well worth the highlight!
We want to take a moment to honor all of the hard work and dedication that has taken place over the decades and a few ways to make the most of Mental Health Month.
First began in 1949, Mental Health America and its affiliates developed the observance of ‘May is Mental Health Month’ by reaching millions of people through local events, screenings, and the media. The point? To spread the word that mental health is something that everyone should care about. And that is every bit as important today as it was seventy years ago.
Each year, Mental Health America assigns a theme to unify the movement and hone in on specific aspects of the cause. This year’s theme is kind of a ‘part two’ that follows the 2018 focus on #4Mind4Body. Psychology Today describes #4Mind4Body 2018 as an emphasis on the fact that “health is an all-encompassing matter and we must take care care of our minds just as much as we take care of our bodies.”
For 2019, the #4Mind4Body campaign has been expanded even further to include the topics of support animals, spirituality, humor, work/life balance, recreation and social connections for enhancing mental health and well-being.
What’s amazing is the way in which this theme really does speak to our current, modern mood. Taking a holistic approach, Mental Health America has long supported the idea that mental health especially benefits from a multi-pronged strategy, addressing the whole person and the community at large. The movement has evolved over the decades, always with an honest look at all of the pieces of the wellness puzzle - it’s current, it’s relevant, and it’s relatable.
It’s important to enhance mental health and well-being with the numerous resources at our disposal, and those resources are growing every day, especially in the Bay Area.
The power of the internet has been an essential tool in raising awareness across the board. In today’s world, social media and the 24/7 availability of information connects us all in ways that were unimaginable even thirty years ago. This ability to foster awareness and empower change through this modern lens is incredibly exciting and we fully support efforts to amplify that reach.
4 Ways to Make the Most of Mental Health Awareness Month
JOIN THE CONVERSATION
Across all social media channels in May, you’ll likely see green ribbons and hashtags related to Mental Health Month and we encourage you to join the conversation online. The importance of breaking the stigma cannot be overstated. Discover mental health stories from others and even marketing campaigns from corporations, such as Burger King’s Real Meal campaign for mental health. Consider sharing your own story with the world if you are comfortable.
EXPORE THE FACTS
Data within the mental health field can be eye-opening. There is a wealth of information online that supports the need for access to resources. Sharing such facts within your social media activity this month adds weight to the message that it’s okay to ask for help. Healthline, the National Alliance on Mental Illness, and Mental Health America are all user-friendly sources for mental health-related information.
CHECK IN WITH YOURSELF
Take some time to visit your own mental health. Are you struggling? Are there areas that could benefit from a trusted professional? Or maybe there are some trouble spots that simply deserve a gentle acknowledgment. By getting in touch with your headspace, you can learn so much - and it’s worth your time. From there, give yourself permission to take it to the next level by adding a professional therapist to your self-care team.
BREAK THE STIGMA
Sometimes the biggest obstacle to accessing mental health resources is our own expectations, our own set of rules that make it hard to reach out. In fact, sometimes it might even be a stretch to take a look at our lives and realize that we have unmet mental health needs in the first place. Here in the Bay Area, where work/life balance alone can be a huge hurdle, it’s pretty common to keep plugging along without checking in. But that’s where you could be missing opportunities to achieve higher levels of happiness and productivity.
Or, perhaps it’s a friend or family member that is encountering struggles with their mental health - Mental Health Month offers an opportunity to show support, broaden knowledge on the subject and enhance the important sense of community around what can sometimes be considered an isolating experience.
Support, acceptance, and outreach are keys to breaking the stigma of mental health needs, and this mindset lowers the walls that stand between those who need help and those who can deliver help.
At reflect, we believe that everyone can benefit from talking with someone on a regular basis. Yet finding a therapist that’s the right match for your unique needs can be intimidating or difficult when tasked with going at the search alone. We can make a difference, by offering the largest self-pay network of top therapists in the Bay Area. Let us help you find your match today. In honor of Mental Health Month, consider it your first step towards a better tomorrow.
Let’s face it - life can get very overwhelming at times. Whether there’s been a sudden loss, new realities, unresolved issues or pressure of any kind, the balancing act between managing our emotional world along with our work/life balance can be challenging to say the least. These days, it can definitely feel like we are getting pulled in a thousand directions at once. One false move, and the whole house of cards comes down. The Bay Area presents its own issues within the areas of career, finances and work/life balance - it’s not uncommon to feel like you’re walking on a tightrope everyday.
That struggle between emotional wellness and work/life balance may benefit from some professional help. Much like we need assistance with our taxes, we can also reach out to professionals who will support our desire for a healthy and happy life. Professional therapists bridge the gap between, “can I do this?” and “here’s our plan.” Whether you suspect an underlying mental illness or simply need an outside perspective to talk it out, therapy can benefit you in many ways.
According to Forbes, there are some pretty intriguing reasons to give talk therapy a try. The number one reason? Therapy has lasting benefits. This is because a therapist helps people work through the issues and develop tools to deal with future problems. While just about everyone can benefit, recent studies found that 60% of adults with mental health concerns did not receive mental health services in the previous year.
Consider bringing a therapist into your support system and you’ll find that it is a fantastic opportunity to level up your professional game and improve your personal life. It can help you handle emotions from problems or stressors, even if they are not dramatically traumatic or life-altering. Therapy can deliver results relatively quickly; the American Psychological Association reports that many patients felt improvement within two weeks of talk therapy. 75% of the clients who work with reflect will gain new insights about their lives within the first four sessions.
Here’s a closer look at four great reasons to put “find a therapist” on today’s to-do list.
Four Benefits of Therapy
Reduce Work and Career Stress
Not only are work and career issues a significant strain on mental health, they require peak performance in order to be successful. That can sometimes feel like a vicious cycle - the very source of stress demands that you operate at your most effective. Understandably, these issues aren’t discussed much within the workplace, and although friends and family can lend an ear, this bears a limit.
A professional therapist provides a neutral, outside perspective where deeper issues are uncovered and a plan can be put in place. It will take some of the strain off your plate and help you feel empowered rather than embattled when facing work the next day. Discussing your work woes with a therapist can be extremely productive for your professional experience, maximizing income and most importantly, enjoying what you do!
Life happens. Constantly. There’s no “pause” button on the stream of events and circumstances that come and go. Therapy delivers tools and techniques from a trusted professional to help you approach situations from a new and more objective perspective. These new strategies lead to feeling more in control of yourself and your reactions; anxiety is reduced and better decisions are reached. This is because working closely with a trusted professional therapist builds confidence and helps to maintain a hopeful outlook. How? By developing your decision-making skills, emotional response, clarity of purpose and coping mechanisms, you’ll be able to trust your new strengths.
Clarify Blind Spots
Even with mindfulness in place and a clear sense of who you are, there is a chance there are still a few blind spots that you’re simply not catching. A therapist is trained and experienced to identify areas that are opportunity for development. Old patterns or habits, a narrow perspective, and relationship stressors are great examples of common blind spots. These areas can be analyzed with a keen eye for removing obstacles that block you from achieving your goals. Sure, talking with friends and family is an important part of your support system however, a trusted professional therapist is neutral and focused on working closely with you to find clear solutions without any emotional stake in the process.
Enhance Life Satisfaction
Life is meant to be lived well. But that doesn’t always happen, does it? And when things get overwhelming, the pressure sometimes leads to poor choices. Perhaps nutrition goes out the window, moods are sour and the bloodstream feels like it is 99% caffeine. To say that life is satisfying when overloaded with pressure is definitely a stretch. This is where the clear benefits of therapy come together in a larger, more comprehensive bonus: you’ll simply enjoy life more. That’s hard to measure yet easy to spot. Time with a professional therapist will be encouraging and productive.
A safe space to get some real results that last. Your overall outlook on life (and yourself) can shift from fearful to hopeful, from confused to clarified, and from frustrated to peaceful. You deserve to enjoy a high-quality life, and therapy provides a clear path along with someone to help you each step of the way.
If you’re ready to re-launch your life through therapy, let reflect help you find the best therapist in the Bay Area to meet your needs. 90% of reflect clients find a therapist they like - perhaps it’s time to add yourself to the equation. Get matched today for a better tomorrow.
Ah, happiness. It feels so elusive, doesn’t it? Life throws curve balls at us on a regular basis. one minute, everything is perfectly okay, humming right along. Next thing you know, something (or someone) can enter your space and disrupt your mindset. From there, it could all go downhill unless you take action to protect your positivity and your mental health.
These days, happiness is even harder to come by due to a seemingly endless sources of stressors. So much so that the most recent World Happiness Report has determined that happiness and life satisfaction have been on the decline in the United States. Across the board, the general population is dealing with major stress factors in the most fundamental aspects of our lives: financial, career, housing, health, and family. Time certainly doesn’t seem to be slowing down enough for all of life’s demands to be met – at least, not without some sacrifices along the way.
When life gets busy, all too often, self-care drops to the end of the to-do list. While this is a natural response, it’s actually rather counterproductive and unhealthy.
After all, we believe that the purpose of life is to be happy! If dealing with life’s Mount Everest on a daily basis is robbing you of the opportunity to access your happiness, there are ways to build that back in to your life again. Getting back to happy utilizes our own body’s ability to get those endorphins flowing and improve your mental, emotional and physical well-being. You deserve it.
Happiness isn’t just a mood, it’s a state of mind and a physical response. Healthline explains that endorphins, serotonin and dopamine are important neurotransmitters that are involved in our natural reward circuits that promote an overall sense of well-being by decreasing pain and increasing pleasure. When we carry out activities that bring reward – perhaps a delicious meal, a breath of fresh air, listen to a favorite good song, and so on – the brain releases serotonin, dopamine which is the feeling of happiness, even if it’s fleeting.
The problem is that in the day-to-day grind, it might be odd to put “stop and smell the roses” on the To-Do list. However, much like putting your oxygen mask on before attempting to help others, it’s important to take the time to deliver these moments of happiness to yourself to reduce stress, lessen anxiety, and give yourself a more positive outlook.
Fortunately, there is a wave of interest in all things self-care related these days. That’s excellent news because it’s time to give yourself permission to practice it. In fact, the more self-care you add to your day, the better you will be at managing a routine without losing your grip when something stressful happens. Take advantage of the following five ways to boost your happiness that will make life worthwhile and fun and also have a thoroughly positive impact on your overall well-being.
Even 20 minutes in a change of scenery and fresh air will get those endorphins flowing naturally. In order to maximize the experience, give yourself permission to drop your mental chatter for this short time and fully connect with your location. Look at the sky, trees, listen for birds or other new sounds. Attempt meditation. Note the temperature and how it makes you feel. Breathe it in, breathe it out, and just connect. A study by researchers at Stanford found that “nature walkers had reduced activity in a particular brain region, the subgenual prefrontal cortex. This area of the brain is associated with rumination, or worrying on the same issues over and over, a problem described often in depressive and anxiety disorders”
IT'S ALL ABOUT THE EXPERIENCE
Sure, things are nice. Clothes, books, electronics, you name it. However, what actually makes us feel most rewarded are experiences. Time with a friend, travel, attending a cool event or diving into a new hobby delivers not only the experience itself, they create great memories that can be revisited at any time. Talk about a win/win.
LIMIT THE TIME YOU SPEND ON SOCIAL MEDIA
Today’s technology connects us to people around the globe, at the touch of a button, 24-hours-a-day. That’s pretty incredible, right? Problem is, it’s all too easy to start the compare/contrast game as we sift through an infinite supply of heavily filtered photos and people presenting their idea of what appears to be a perfect life. The National Alliance on Mental Health reports that in the U.S. alone, 7 out of 10 people are active social media users and that while social media has its benefits, there are negative implications. NAMI suggests that we be more mindful of what we consume online, aiming to reduce screen time in order to build real-world experiences.This is a strong case for moderation and developing other habits when you want to escape during a commute or sitting on the sofa.
Get out there and get moving in whichever way you can. Studies have shown that within merely 5 minutes of walking, dancing or anything else that raises your heart rate, the brain releases enough of those happy endorphins to boost your mood in a big way. 10 minutes gives your mind a chance to react to new stimuli and relax, and 20 minutes of exercise offers head-to-toe benefits to every system in your body. According to Healthline, even brief physical exertion lowers blood pressure, increases circulation and reduces anxiety. You don’t have to go to the gym, a brisk walk with a friend or working a longer walk into your daily commute is a great start.
TALK IT OUT -- TRY THERAPY
Sometimes, finding our happiness can be tricky. It’s one of those concepts that can seem so much easier said than done, even when natural endorphins have been deployed. That’s because the mountains we climb on a daily basis are, in fact, big mountains. They weigh on mental health because they matter and need to be resolved and therapy is not solely when someone is in a crisis. Most of us see a dentist twice a year for maintenance, therapy can provide similar benefits.
Consulting a professional with an objective, outside perspective can be an essential step to tackling any trouble spots that are creating life obstacles and dampening your happiness. The great part about therapy is that you don’t need a mental health illness to talk to someone, you just have to be ready to talk about whatever is going on in your life.
Let reflect help you select the right therapist for your goals, your needs, and your style. There are many different types of therapy that offer a chance to get an outside viewpoint and learn new insights through a trusted professional. With reflect, you’ll find a great match for your needs across the Bay Area. Together, the path can be cleared of speed bumps that are hindering your ability to fully embrace joy and live that happy life.
In every business, the most important challenge is how to get clients or customers. Without paying customers, no business will run for very long and the saying, “if we build it, they will come” no longer applies to the real world. To get more customers or clients, business owners need to learn how to market their business
For some, marketing is fun and crunching numbers for individual marketing strategies comes naturally. Meanwhile, therapists are rarely trained marketers and prefer to focus their efforts on their clients which leaves them struggling between finding clients and helping them. If you find your practice dealing with this struggle, follow these four tips to get counseling clients with a bit more ease.
Most working American adults are affected by stress at some point in their daily lives. This stress is, perhaps unsurprisingly, most frequently coming from the workplace. From competition with fellow employees, to not getting paid enough and/or tumultuous relationships with employers, work-related stress is common and can be unhealthy and impact performance. In fact, a recent study from Everest College found that 83% of U.S. workers are stressed. But, what is work-related stress?
Let’s face it, we live in stressful times. Rates of suicide, depression, and anxiety are up across the country. The National Alliance on Mental Illness found that 1 in 5 U.S. adults will experience mental illness in a given year. That’s over 48 million adults! Between financial pressure, family pressure, relationships, and the constant expectation to look perfect on social media, it’s understandable to feel stressed out or worse. Therapy is a meaningful way to work through life’s stressors and, fortunately for everyone, therapy is finally gaining the popularity it deserves. In fact, the Wall Street Journal recently reported that “Millennials are the therapy generation.” This generation is more open to seeking assistance for mental health problems and is changing the landscape of mental health treatment. We’re okay with that.
Therapy has been used to treat mental health illness and conditions since the 19th century. Healthline reports that “Behavioral therapy has successfully been used to treat a large number of conditions.” Some of those conditions include anxiety disorders, depression, and substance abuse. However, you don't have to have a “disorder” or mental illness to see a therapist. Therapy is wildly successful in treating conditions that we all might experience at one time or another, such as work stress, the death of a loved one, or any other terrible life event that may happen. We are all human and we all can benefit from therapy, especially when there are obvious signs that life sucks right now and it’s time to see a therapist. The following are a few of those signs.
It's no secret that a cluttered environment can have a significant impact on our mind. The mess can be distracting and bombard us with extra stimuli. Some of us respond by allowing the anxiety to build, while others succumb to the inescapable urge to immediately tackle the problem. Either way, the constant feeling of needing to clean can breed guilt and frustration. The good news is that there is a silver lining to our cleaning conundrum. When we finally adopt the habits needed to maintain a decluttered home, the mental impact can be magical.
At reflect, we're taking the advice of Japanese bestselling author, consultant, and the new star of Netflix's hot new show, Marie Kondo, who believes that tidying up is so life-changing, she wrote a New York Times #1 best-selling book. In it, she makes the case for minimalist living through a specific decluttering process.
By Jonathan TranPham, founder of reflect
Years ago when my roommate first suggested I go to therapy, let’s just say I didn’t respond with the most open mind.
I’d always been an advocate of therapy and have even recommended it to friends. But I never considered it for myself.
"BAD ENOUGH" FOR THERAPY?
I was sure I wasn't "bad enough" to need therapy. I was functioning overall and was used to managing stress solo. Sure, work was pretty hectic, and I wasn’t sleeping well -- but most of my friends had stressful jobs. And yes, I was frustrated with dating -- but who actually likes the dating scene in SF?
I knew I theoretically could benefit from therapy, but I was reluctant to even consider it. I was worried going to therapy would mean that I was weak or even worse, broken.
Looking back, I’m so glad my roommate pushed me to try.
She made some great points. I go to the gym 4-5x a week to stay physically fit, why shouldn’t I work on my mind too? And going to therapy was like going to the gym for my soul.
More than anything, hearing her personal personal experiences in therapy helped me understand what therapy actually was -- and what it wasn’t.
I decided to give it a try.
Helpful tips for managing stress, incorporating mindfulness, and promoting a healthy lifestyle