This article was developed via a partnership with BetterHelp.
The field of psychology is filled with a variety of careers for professionals to choose from. Certain fields are better suited for certain individuals depending on their goals, personality, preferred income, skills, interests, and talents. One potential career path one might pick is that of a psychologist. Psychologists are trained to assist their clients with a variety of mental health concerns, and there are many benefits to seeing one. Whether you are seeking help for a problem in your life or are thinking about becoming a psychologist yourself, it can be helpful to learn about what they do. You can learn more at this link: https://www.betterhelp.com/advice/psychologists/. With this information in mind, you can make a decision regarding your own mental health or career.
What is a Psychologist?
Psychologists are scientists who study how the human brain works and how humans think and behave. Many of them perform research on a variety of topics like memory, development, personality, and cognition. In most cases, they have an area they specialize in. Some of these might include learning disabilities, speech pathology, developmental disorders, or counseling. While some psychologists research all day, others spend their time talking with clients and helping them sort out different problems in their life.
Types of Psychologists
There are many different kinds of psychologists one can be. One’s area of specialty normally determines their title. Some of the possible titles a psychologist could have include:
- Forensic psychologist: Deal with criminal, civil, or legal matters.
- Social psychologist: Study group dynamics like implicit bias, bullying, and prejudice.
- Clinical psychologist: Treat emotional, behavioral, and mental disorders.
- Educational psychologist: Work to understand the learning and instructional process.
- Organizational psychologist: Focus on employee behavior in the workplace.
- Child psychologist: Study the development of children.
- Military psychologist: Concentrates on military personnel and their families.
- Evolutionary psychologist: Study human behavior through an evolutionary lens.
- Cognitive psychologist: Concerned with mental processes like memory and attention.
- Neuropsychologist: Study the relationship between human behavior and brain function.
- Aviation psychologist: Work with employees in the aviation industry.
- Occupational psychologist: Study human behavior in work-related settings.
- And more
Psychologists can be very specialized in their work, such as an aviation psychologist, or they might have a broader skillset. If someone is very interested in a certain area of research, they’re more likely to have a narrower skillset. Certain problems require a specialist’s help, so these psychologists come in handy when someone has nowhere else to turn.
What Do Psychologists Do?
A typical day in the life of a psychologist will primarily depend on what type of psychologist they are. Work settings can vary greatly, as an example. Some people work in schools or offices, while others work in hospitals or even outdoors. In general, psychologists who meet with clients spend much of their time assessing, diagnosing, and then coming up with treatment plans for different people.
Different mental health conditions require unique approaches to treatment and psychologists are responsible for deciding what would be best for the clients they’re seeing. Some people will need medication, in which case they’d be referred to a psychiatrist. Others will need specific therapies to manage their symptoms. Psychologists can get certified in a variety of therapies such as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) or Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) that may help their clients heal.
Many psychologists perform counseling or therapy on a regular basis. If you’re looking for a psychologist to counsel you, consider asking these questions during your search:
- How long have you been practicing?
- Are there any areas you specialize in?
- Which therapies are you qualified to perform?
- How often do you think we would need to meet?
- How long do you feel we’d need to meet?
- Do you give your clients homework or reading outside of sessions?
- When was the last time you worked with someone like me?
- How much do you charge per session?
- How should I prepare for my first session with you?
- What does success mean to you concerning my treatment and healing?
Everyone needs something different in counseling or therapy, so you shouldn’t compare your situation to anyone else’s. Therapy is all about you, so make sure your needs are coming first. How well you get along with your psychologist can make or break your experience, so you want to make sure you’re choosing wisely. If you start with one psychologist and discover they aren’t a great fit for you, you can always make a switch.
Becoming a psychologist can be a very exciting and rewarding career, although it can have its challenges. You should explore all your options before picking a specialty and deciding to pursue this career. This is especially true since it can be very expensive to go into psychology because of the education requirements.
In addition, seeking the help of a mental health professional such as a psychologist can greatly benefit anyone needing assistance. If you’ve never sought support for your mental health before, it can be intimidating. However, it could be the difference between living happier and healthier or continuing to have troublesome symptoms.
On top of seeing a psychologist, you should have other hobbies and habits that promote healthy living. This might mean picking up a sport like tennis, practicing a new skill like archery, or writing in a journal in your spare time. Anything that stimulates your mind, allows you to relax, and is enjoyable can benefit you for the long run. Sometimes lifestyle changes can put you back on the right track, but there are other times you’ll need a professional’s help, and that’s okay. Everyone moves at different speeds and has unique needs, so don’t hesitate to do what’s best for you and alter your plans as necessary. A healthy mindset is possible; it just takes some patience and work to get there.