What is it like to be a licensed professional counselor (LPC) or a licensed marriage and family therapist (LMFT)?
What is it like to be a licensed professional counselor (LPC)? Any advice on the career? Is it a rewarding job? Do you get burnout from hearing other people's problems?
Wow, that is quite a question!! Being a LMHC is a very rewarding, stimulating, and at times exhausting profession. It can leave you feeling elated sometimes, while at others you may feel dejected and disappointed. The main thing I like about this line of work is that it is Human. I feel that I can be of value to people in need, and that some people will improve as a result of our interactions. I highly recommend it for people who genuinely care for others and are willing to deal with setbacks if they occur.
It is very important to have balance in your life in order to avoid potential burnout. Self-care is essential to leading the best life you can have as both a professional and human being living an enriching personal life. Commitment to clients and self are equally important aspects of being an effective therapist. You will only burn out if you allow yourself to become overly caught up in the lives of your clients- boundaries are essential and must be clear.
I've loved my career as a counselor/therapist. My main complaints are on the business end of the work- Dealing with insurance companies, keeping your financial books, billing, etc. are sometimes drudgery, but hiring out some or all of this work is a way to make it less problematic.
I hope this helps answer some of your questions. Take care and choose wisely. Most importantly, follow your heart!
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Ebony’s Answer, CareerVillage.org Team
Even as a student burnout is real but it also presents an opportunity for us to know our limits and take time for ourselves. As a result, when I start to feel overwhelmed I can clear my calendar and take some time for myself to ensure I can sharp and attentive for my clients. During that time it means I need to take self-care seriously and do the things we usually take for granted. Go for walks, pray/meditate, eat healthy meals, surround myself with a healthy support system.
Before I started I thought my biggest challenge would be the ability to leave work at work. However, as time progresses that becomes easier depending on the cases/clients. Your training will prepare you a great deal for what you can anticipate. Of course, every once in a while life and clients will through you a curve ball but keeps the job interesting.
Hopefully, this helps.