Have you ever wondered what going through the mind of a psychologist when you’re in a session? Here’s what I’m thinking about when I see a new client and their family.
Many families come in with preconceived ideas of what psychologists do and what counselling is about. They may think I’m sitting in judgement of them, pointing a finger and wondering what did they do wrong to have a child who is anxious?, not behaving at school, having concentration issues, struggling with homework, or getting along with others.
Problems present themselves in all our lives. When we’re in conversation, I’m wondering why this issue is presenting now. I’m trying to understand all the factors at play. I’m curious about the child’s development from babyhood till now, their strengths and difficulties, how they cope, their personality, their motivators, de motivators, their biological factors, how they express themselves and their relationship with others. Of course a huge part of a child’s life is their family and as they get older their peers and sense of self.
In a first session I’m curious about all these things, I’m taking all the information in and trying to formulate a plan. I’m not looking to point fingers, or find one root cause (i.e. it’s entirely the parents fault). Families may be worried about opening up but I can assure you that it’s only natural to be apprehensive.
In reality just because you come and sit in my chair, you don’t have to do that. Of course the more information I have the better. I am actually amazed at the strengths that each family has shown and how they have coped until now, and I feel like a detective looking for clues and piecing together the puzzle.
That’s what I love about my job. My role as a psychologist is to walk beside you, to see things from your child’s point of view, yours and of course my own. My view is always to empower, no family is perfect, everyone needs an outside perspective when trying to make changes and that’s what psychology does.
So if you’re wondering what your psychologist is thinking, it’s a framework probably outside the everyday way we think of relationships, it’s about curiosity, it’s based in science and research and from my end it’s always about respect, trust and the desire to help.
So let’s talk…