When first embarking on the adventure and honour of helping others as a professional, credentialed, certified therapist, it is all you can do to contain your excitement as you await each new client. Brimming over with theories, interventions and techniques, the beginner counsellor knows, in their bones, that they can make a difference. It is a wonderful, fulfilling knowing and despite the occasional bouts of doubt and moments of uncertainty, it is an amazing time in a counsellor’s career, and I reveled in it as I embarked on my dream profession.
So what happened to me? To many of us? You know, to our dreams of helping hundreds of hurting clients and becoming self-actualized in the process? Instead, many of us have found ourselves 10, 15, 20 years down the road burned out, weary, depressed and doubting. Even wondering, in our darker moments, whether counselling really helps anyone in the long run anyway. Not a fun place to be. And not a place one has to stay, either. As one of my favourite colleagues likes to point out, “suffering is optional”.
*The views expressed by our authors are personal opinions and do not necessarily reflect the views of the CCPA