Psychotherapists can work in hospitals, clinics, schools, student health centers, day-care centers for children or older people, prisons, asylums, government offices, psychoanalytical institutes, etc.
The human mind is an endless chapter of feelings, emotions, expressions, and thoughts. It is all these that make us laugh and cry. Some of us are able to cope with the difficulties in life, while a few unfortunate people among us are unable to deal with various problems and emotional issues in a positive way. These may lead to many psychological problems. Psychotherapists help people to handle these issues, and guide them towards a peaceful life.
Psychotherapists are good listeners. They deal with various problems such as addictions, relationship issues, learning disabilities, unemployment issues, loss/death of loved ones, etc. Dealing with problems of people is not an easy job, and requires enormous patience, commitment, dedication, and a special skill to understand people and their inner conflicts to help address the exact problem. They are supposed to find out effective ways to treat them. So now, let us move ahead to know about the job description, educational requirements, and most importantly, the psychotherapists salary range.
According to PayScale, the average salary of a psychotherapist can vary between USD37,000 - USD165,000. The more experienced ones are definitely paid more. The median salary is $48,501.➺
The average annual salary of a newly graduated psychotherapist is $41,774.➺
A late-career psychotherapist earns an average salary of $58,775 per year. Top 10% of them earn more than $120K.➺
Location plays an important role in the salary of a psychotherapist. According to Indeed, a psychotherapist in New York city earns $89,000, while the one in Phoenix earns $55,000 annually.➺
Psychotherapists in San Francisco take home $89,000 annually, while those in Boston take home $82,000 annually.
To come out of their grief and psychological suffering, people are ready to pay hefty amounts to psychotherapists. Therefore, there is no limit for the private psychotherapists income; larger the clientele, more is the income. It is possible to work as a freelance psychotherapist, however, it requires time to build a strong client group. So, the ideal path is to gain work experience for few years, and if needed, one can establish their own independent clinic. In all such cases, it is vital to obtain specific licenses from the concerned authorities. Psychotherapists considering the option of self-employment in this field must also consider overhead costs, insurance claims, and other factors to secure their finances.
Psychotherapists Job Description
Certainly, a psychotherapist's job is not simple as it includes a vast array of duties and responsibilities. Some of them are mentioned below.➺
The most important duty of a psychotherapist is to communicate with the client and understand his/her problem. The number of sessions depend upon how complicated the issue is, and based on that, the treatment is decided.➺
Problems may differ from person to person. Therefore, to find the problem, and recommend a 'near to perfect' solution, psychotherapists have to adopt various approaches of psychotherapy, such as, hypno-psychotherapy, cognitive behavioral therapy, humanistic and integrative psychotherapies, experiential constructivist therapies, psychodynamic therapy, and psychoanalysis.➺
They use a variety of techniques and therapies, rather than using drugs or physical treatments.➺
Apart from working for their own clients, conducting counseling sessions for social workers, high-profile corporate executives, nurses, teachers, teenage children, etc., also form an important part of the psychotherapist's job.➺
Developing welfare and developmental programs in consultation with other psychotherapists, for effective patient care.➺
Maintaining medical records of patient history and case references.➺
Being in touch and updated with the latest trends and developments in the domain of psychotherapy.➺
Guiding the patient throughout the entire treatment procedure, and keeping a track of the change in his behavior and development.
Psychotherapists Educational Requirements
As mentioned earlier, working as a psychotherapist is not an easy job and therefore, you need to be qualified enough to become a counselor. A bachelor's degree followed by a master's degree in psychology or a social science subject is necessary to enter this profession. In order to become a licensed psychotherapist, you need to complete a postgraduate internship, either in psychotherapy itself or other therapeutic fields such as clinical, social work, licensed professional counseling, etc. Besides formal education, psychotherapists should also have effective communication skills, patience, a deep understanding of the human mind, and most importantly a positive approach towards life!
For psychotherapists, the salary range should not be a constraint at all. Rather the excellent career opportunities, career development, and above all, an eagerness to serve humanity, should be your prime concern.