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What are some pro's and con's with being a psychologist?

Just a little worried about the negatives #clinical-psychology #psychology #college-major

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Betty’s Answer

Hi Jolee,

While I don't profess to have to a clinical or healthcare background in psychology, these are my personal observations.

While I was attending college many years ago, most of the my peers were psych undergrad students who had good intentions, but they may have been trying to find the answers to their own problems. I can foresee that this field is growing rapidly since mental illness might be on the rise given all the pressures and stress from the modern workplace, pandemic and other personal situations. Also, I see the field as very competitive and I imagine it would be very difficult to establish a reputation and get started in this field.

The pros are that in some cases you might be helping others with their personal issues. I've seen a therapist for many years and I think the distinction between a therapist and psychologist is that the latter can prescribe medication whereas the former cannot. Also, I believe that you could make a good living out of this profession, and with remote everything, you could virtually see patients from all over the US.

If you are mindful about why you're pursuing the profession and how to apply it for the benefit of patients and the community, then the solid foundation will help you immeasurably. At my company, they have granted us a mental health perk for 15 hours of therapy given the huge toll of depression and other issues that have taken hold since the pandemic. It's a worthwhile profession to pursue and I anticipate a lot more people needing the help especially with the aging population and all the other problems going on in the world. Hope this helps.

Thank you comment icon Thank you, I really appreciate this responds. That was something I have been looking into a lot. Jolee
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Christine’s Answer

I am a clinical psychologist, so my specialty involves treating people who experience mental illness and other problems of living, so that they can lead healthier and more fulfilling lives. It is a fascinating and ever-changing field with many opportunities to work in different settings (e.g.,schools, hospitals, a university) and with different populations. Helping people to make life changes can be very rewarding and our ever changing understanding of mental illness and stressful life circumstances contributes to work that is very interesting. With a clinical psychology emphasis a big pro is that one can really help to improve the quality of life for others. I really do not see any major downsides to the field. It can be hard work and hearing about the hard times that people have had can be stressful, at times, for a psychologist. However, you would be trained to take care of yourself so that you do not become overwhelmed. You do need to be committed to obtaining a doctoral degree in Psychology -- which can take approximately 5 years to complete after you obtain your bacheler's degree. You take courses in graduate school, conduct research, and also get "hands-on" experience working with people if you are obaining a degree in clinical psychology.

With all this being said, keep in mind that clinicl psychology is only one subfield of psychology. There are other subfields such as developmental psychology, forensic psychology, and social psychology. These subfields are different from clinical psychology and they likely have different pros and cons. I suggest you google "Psychology Subfields" to read about the different specialties within the field of psychology.
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