If you’ve ever wondered what it’s like to be a therapist, then this blog post may interest you! I think that my experience and day to day life holds true for a lot of therapists in some ways. Let’s talk about how my day to day is going, and how being a therapist affects my life.
As you may have guessed, a lot of my days are planned and scheduled according to my daily client sessions, so my agenda is my best friend and daily reminder! I have my agenda basically everywhere I go, and this helps me keep track of my Monday through Friday work hours/sessions. This means that every day I look in my agenda and write in it, I do this as soon as I get ready for work and sit in my home office. I check emails daily and get back to clients and co-workers usually first thing in the morning.
I then get to work on paperwork like writing evaluations, treatment plans, and completing clinical progress notes. In case you didn’t know, every time a therapist has a session, there needs to be a note created, so we basically have a lot of on-going paperwork due and most of us have a love/hate relationship with our notes. Notes run our world. I then do my best to get ready, and mentally prepared for my sessions depending on what the clients of the day are working on. I may read something from a book to refresh myself, look up a cool activity or exercise for my teens or children clients, and start my sessions!
I also try to make sure I give myself breaks in between session to eat a meal and decompress, but often I forget to do this because I’m human just like you. Often my stomach reminds me that I need to eat and then I try to run to the kitchen and grab a tea, and a snack, since we are all working from home. I also may get the occasional call from my mother checking in on me, or a friend calling me/texting me to check in, and I may also forget to get back to them in a timely manner since my attention usually goes to my clients. After my work day and sessions are completed, here comes the end of the day paperwork again, and I often try to reward myself with something after work like ice cream, a walk, re-runs of my favorite TV show the 90’s Charmed or I watch make up tutorials on YouTube, things that do not require much brain power since by then my brain is in need of a re-charge and is at 10%. Pretty simple right? Because therapist are human, just like you! We are not scary aliens with our lives perfectly put together with perfectly cleaned homes. We have a pile of dishes to do too! We have laundry that we have been avoiding too, and what we also have is mental health, just like everyone else.
As a therapist, I make sure that whatever I have going on in my personal life, it cannot and does not interfere with my clients or sessions but hey, again, I’m human, so if or when it does, we therapists get peer consultations, which are not only for this but also to teach and learn even more things!
I often get this question from a client “how do you listen to everybody’s problems and still feel good?” Well the truth is that not every single time I feel “good’, or not have the things others go through affect me but, I make sure to include self-care and all the things that help me feel excited or happy also be a part of my life in the mornings or in the night after work. The things that makes us happy are unique to the person but for me it may be listening to the audio book I’ve been wanting to listen to, work on my social media or website, write this blog post, do a face mask, or take my dog on a walk in his dog stroller! All of these things help me decompress, and not burn out.
So, you see, therapists are people, sons, daughters, sisters, brothers, mothers, fathers, aunts and uncles, etc. We are regular people living in the same world as you and we are specifically trained to help you achieve a healthier mental state. We are caring, genuine, curious, and resourceful individuals that believe in everyone’s ability to overcome their challenges through a healthy and safe therapeutic relationship.
I hope this post helped you recognize that therapists are not scary or perfect.
There is a therapist out there ready to help you achieve your goals just one phone call away.
Jennifer Morejon, LMFT
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