Want to know how to be an amazing therapist?

Stop regurgitating proven techniques.

Drop what you’ve been told to do without questioning it first.

Forget about reflective listening, paraphrasing, mirroring, restating and all these other fancy terms.

Throw out the psychology books from graduate school that you were forced to read.

Don’t attend trainings just because you need continuing credits.

Burn your journals if they are piling dust in a corner.

Quit asking your supervisor questions you already know the answer to.

If you have something to say then say it.

Don’t hold back your heart.

Learn from people who live what they preach.

Only study methods that truly inspire you.

Be a living example of growth in your own life.

Learn from your own suffering or stop expecting your clients to deal with theirs.

Don’t blame people for obstacles in your own life or you will teach clients to blame people for obstacles in their lives.

Show care for your clients when you mean it and let them know.

Challenge them to make big changes in their life or they won’t. They will just talk to you about making changes for months or even years.

Only use techniques that you truly stand behind.

Push yourself to grow beyond what you thought you were capable of.

Love yourself first.

Cry in front of your clients.

Say the thing you are afraid of saying. And repeat it to them.

Liberate yourself from money scarcity or you will be co-dependent on your clients.

Be human.

There are certain situations that calls for a personal story.

Stop acting superior in anyway.

Act as an authority figure to transmit knowledge and healing.

Lead with confidence when you know what you’re talking about.

Don’t focus on low priorities in your life. Have someone else do them for you.

Put all of your energy into your highest priorities. You will prosper. And your clients will get better.

Go after a goal with all your energy until you either completely succeed or need to change course.

Be yourself with your clients or they will not be themselves with you.

Above all else, bring the gift to your clients that only you have.

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Keith Kurlander

Keith Kurlander is the founder of Higher Practice, a company dedicated to helping therapists achieve their highest potential in private practice. He has two decades of combined experience in business administration, group facilitation, teaching at the undergraduate and graduate level, yoga instruction and as a licensed professional counselor in private practice.

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