As therapists, it is vital that we have a good support system in place for our professional and confidential work.
Personal therapy is one way in which we can get this support. Supervision is another, and it will be the focus of these posts.
In the next few months, I will talk a bit about 18 ways in which we should expect supervision to work for us.
I will discuss 18 things we should expect from our supervisory relationship in order to be accountable and working to a professional standard, for the sake of our practice, our profession, and most importantly, for the sake of our clients
Missed my previous posts?
Catch up here:
Are you starting out in private practice?
Are you an experienced therapist looking for a new supervisory relationship?
In this post, I want to review some of the ways attending appropriate supervision will help you practice to a high standard.
Every profession has its ethical codes. The medical profession has the Hypocratic Oath (in a few words – do no harm).
The Counselling and Psychotherapy profession also has ethical codes. I follow the BACP’s Ethical Framework, but have also learned more about ethics from courses I’ve gone on and from experience itself.
These codes are set for a reason.
Unfortunately there are people out there that believe they can work as a counsellor or psychotherapist with some basic training and very little supervision.
This is dangerous and should be flagged up and dealt with by Membership Bodies and other organisations involved in regulation and protecting professionals as well as their clients.
Yes, the knowledge we gain through a PgDip or a B.A. course, or the other options out there, is great, but it is certainly not enough.
Good supervision needs to exist from our very first session, and should continue throughout our practice.
It is not just something for trainees (I think in the USA, once you are licenced you don’t need to have supervision regularly anymore, I’m not so sure this is a great idea but they must have things in place for this).
Supervision helps us keep practicing to a safe standard, as it’s a regular space to keep ourselves accountable about the work we do, how we do it, and whether we need a break or are in a good place to continue and work with even more clients with a varity of presentations.
As we’ve spoken about in other posts in this series, good supervision will allow you to develop these areas, which will in turn benefit your practice and your clients and supervisees:
- reflective practice
- supervisor challenging your practice
- developing autonomous practices
- developing more skills to benefit your clients
- learning new ways of therapeutic interventions in a session
- work through difficult emotions client sessions might bring up
So, consider your practice as it is now, are you getting these things from your supervision?
Are you practising to a safe-standard?
Being aware of how we work, why we work this way, and how to improve our skillset is all important for your practice and your clients.
Feel free to share it with your colleagues, supervisees, supervisors and others.
The more we talk about what supervision should be about, what it should cover, and how it should support therapists in their private practice, the better equipped we all will be, and we will provide the a better service to our clients