Center Institute

Because being a great therapist isn't enough to build an awesome practice.
Because being a great therapist
isn't enough to build an awesome practice.
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Will you do what it takes to reach your goals?

I flew to DC for the weekend a couple of weeks ago – it was a really quick trip: there on Friday, back to Montana on Sunday. But it was SO good to be able to go. To have the flexibility and financial freedom to make the choice to be there. My dad started acting in community theatre productions about ten years ago. And a few months ago he was cast as Atticus Finch in To Kill a Mockingbird. The role is a big deal. To me, being able to fly across the country to see my dad star in his most important play to date, is what financial freedom is about.

To go to DC was a choice. But so was the success of my practice. I got to a point where I actually decided that I was going to figure out how to make my practice work. I didn’t give myself an out. I invested in my practice and did not allow myself to even consider the possibility of failure. Yes, I was afraid it wouldn’t work, that I would have put all that money in and it would just end up as a big FAIL and a financial loss. But I knew that I would do whatever it took to make sure that didn’t happen. I knew I was willing to do things that virtually gave me hives – like giving a talk on the Teen Brain to therapists, counseling grad students, nursing students, and parents in the community. I didn’t have my dad’s stage confidence and I didn’t sleep well for months before that talk. I researched, read, and practice for at least six weeks ahead of time. And honestly, my presentation was okay. I think the content was good, but my nervousness showed. But the thing is, it didn’t matter. That was a step I had to take to build my name as a therapist for teens.

But it gets easier. Now I still find public speaking a challenge, but a few months ago when I was asked to give a talk with less than a week’s notice, I said yes and nailed it a few days later.

Sure, there are a lot of things I tried that didn’t actually help my business, but they were mostly the easier, less exposing routes – like print ads, hanging out online, knocking and running (i.e. leaving information with people I didn’t know). Building your business will stretch you. It will force you to do things that push your limits of what you know you are capable of. But if you’re willing to do what it takes, and you take the steps you need to (and not all the side paths that seem promising), you can get there.

Comment below to let us know what it is that scares you most but you’re willing to do in order to build your private practice (so you can reach more clients, help more people, and take good care of yourself).

Talk soon,

4 Responses

  1. I am willing to do research into businesses that see my ideal client and shedule time to meet with them to cultivate a relationship. I am willing to persevere even if some of these businesses decline a meeting-it’s a numbers game.

  2. It is scary to think about changing the psychodynamic frame I normally work with, but also invigorating to think about writing a class or running an online group.

  3. Paula says:

    I’m naturally a very shy person, so it scares the daylights out of me to have to go sell myself one-on-one. Public speaking doesn’t scare me so much, though, because I can prepare for that much like preparing a lesson when I used to teach school. I can prepare my speech or talk and have control over the content. But that intimate contact where I have to initiate the contact and then have to sell myself is very scary to me.

  4. Kari Thpsom says:

    Tomorrow I give the same presentation I have done for a room of 15-20 people to a room of 50 influential business people in my community. I feel confident in the material but want to NAIL IT b/c these people could bring their kids to me for play therapy. I am willing to do FREE public speaking in the hopes I will sow the seeds for future clients. I feel the more these community members hear and see me the connection will be made and relationships will establish.
    Wanting to use testimonials from previous clients any advice on that with marketing??
    Can’t and won’t fail, Kari