If you follow my blog, you likely have had a dream of starting, growing or filling some type of private practice.

As dreams go, they stay dreams until they become your reality.

Have you ever asked yourself what the consequences would be if you never accomplished your dreams in private practice?

I’ve talked to therapists all across the world who want more clients and when I ask them that question most just go into shame and a sense of defeat when they try and answer it.

They complain they don’t have the money, the skills or the know how to get what they want.

However, those complaints typically aren’t the main problem that stops them from achieving success.

Over time, most business owners realize the biggest roadblock to success is a self-defeating attitude and an unwillingness to fully contemplate the consequences of quitting or not even trying.

When I work with people, I address the potential consequences of not going after what you want in your career. This is an invaluable exercise so you can fully understand what will happen if you don’t pursue your dreams.

When you put your dreams on hold, life will find a way to challenge you to get back on track through consequences.

When you evaluate those consequences logically rather than shame yourself about them, you turn the tables so the consequences start working for you rather than against you.

With a clear understanding of what might happen or has already happened if you don’t pursue your goals, you are actually much more likely to stay motivated, persistent and achieve your desires.

I’m guessing most of you desire a full private practice, but if you’re interested in something else this can be applied to any career vision.

I’ll give you some real examples that you can probably relate to.

Here’s a list of consequences I’ve heard from therapists over the years when they chose not to fully pursue their dreams:

Staying in a full-time job you are sick of
Staying in a part-time job for pocket money
Working for others who don’t value you
Not practicing the type of therapy you want
Seeing nearly 40 clients a week in organizational work
Burnout, more burnout and considering leaving the field altogether
Not earning enough money
Too much time away from your children
Not being able to parent in the way you want
Stress at work means stress in your marriage
The Monday morning blues and TGIF every Friday
Bedtime is just a crappy transition to the next crappy work day
No savings in the bank. Ever
Never owning a home with no plan in place
No scalable business model for the future
Low-budget vacations
You get the picture…

Again, most therapists initially go into a self-defeating victimized cycle around these consequences of not achieving their dreams.

But there’s another way.

Use the consequences as a way to motivate yourself to achieve your dreams.

Ask yourself how long are you willing to stay in the consequence of not achieving your dreams in private practice?

Hopefully, your answer is that you’re not willing to stay very long so you can actually get what you want.

Here’s a list of the real rewards I’ve seen people achieve when they’ve used consequences as a means for motivation…

Building a private practice to a waitlist
Earning multiple six-figures a year
Determining your own schedule
Seeing as many clients as you want
Decorating your own office to create the healing space you envisioned
Saving thousands of dollars a month in the bank
Investing thousands of dollars a month
Purchasing a first home
Having more time for your children
Feeling more resourced for your relationship
Excited about going to work on Monday
Feeling fulfilled on Fridays before the weekend comes

Yep…it’s all possible.

Perception is half the battle here. There’s no way around it. You will face consequences in your life that you don’t want if you’re not pursuing the career path you desire.

Life just won’t let you stay comfortable if you’re not fully aligned with your highest vision.

The most effective way to dealing with those consequences is by changing your perception of them. Consequences are here to help motivate you to achieve the change you want. There’s no reason to succumb to believing consequences are here to hurt you.

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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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