According to data gathered by the American Psychological Association, about half of American households contain at least one person who has sought treatment for mental health issues.
As a mental health counselor, you want to be able to help the people who come to you to get their lives on track. In order to do so, you need to make sure you offer the latest and most effective treatments and types of therapy.
It doesn't matter whether you primarily help individuals who are struggling with substance abuse or if you work with clients with mood disorders.
We know that you want to improve your mental health counseling services.
Not only do you want to reach more clients with a strong web presence. You also want to look into continuing education options.
This will allow you to master more areas of specialization. In this post, we'll tell you how to do just that.
Read on to learn how to advance your mental health counselor career and to make a difference in countless lives.
Improve Your Web Presence
The first step that you need to take when you're ready to improve your mental health counseling career is to take a hard look at your current web presence.
Have you submitted your counseling website, or at least your contact information, to local online directories?
What about directories geared towards helping people connect with a mental health professional?
If not, then make sure that you submit your information to sites like the SAMHSA directory and more. Additionally, ensure that your website loads quickly and correct on different browsers.
Also, see that it's compatible with both desktop and mobile users. You should also evaluate your local keyword strategy. For example, what if someone types in a keyword phrase like, "counseling near me" or "counseling" and then the name of their home city and state?
You want them to have a better chance of ending up on your website and in your practice.
Developing a strong local keyword strategy means that a higher number of people who are the most likely to engage with your services will end up on your website.
Finally, consider adding a few anonymous client testimonials to your website.
After all, 75% of people who need mental health counseling never get help, due in large part to the stigma surrounding seeing a professional.
Testimonials show that many people from all walks of life have made the choice to get help from a mental health counselor. It will also help you to build up a sense of trust in people who are considering working with you.
Take a Continuing Education Course
When you're trying to improve your mental health counseling career, we know that you'll likely consider taking continuing education courses related to different treatment modalities before anything else.
Of course, these are incredibly important. (We'll talk more about them in the next section of this post).
However, you also need to ensure that you're using the most efficient and ethical methods of getting more clients and managing your business as a whole.
Mental health counselors encounter a unique and often complicated set of issues, whether dealing with conflict or with case management. Making sure that you know how to react to these situations before they get out of control is incredibly valuable.
What else should you think about in the course of your ongoing continuing education?
We urge you to consider taking courses in case management, client-client rights, and even how to deal with potential client complaints.
You can also study up on confidentiality laws, conflicts of interest, and crisis intervention.
Add More Areas of Specialization to Your Practice
So, your license is up-to-date, and you've even taken continuing education courses in order to help you to grow your mental health counseling practice.
What else can you do to bring in more clients, and, by extension, change more lives?
In addition to taking courses on courses specifically designed to help you manage and improve your practice, (like ones on treating co-occurring disorders, for example) think about areas of specialization.
What specific mental health disorders can you help to treat?
For example, you might consider taking a continuing education course that helps you to better address the needs of those with trauma and PTSD.
This means that you'll learn specific techniques and treatment options that will allow you to access a more targeted client demographic.
There are no limits to potential areas of specialization that you can pursue. We suggest conducting a little competitor research. Doing so will help you to better identify any mental health gaps in your service area.
You can take classes in Dissociative Identity Disorder, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, and even learn how to treat clients that struggle with Eating Disorders.
Grow Your Career as a Mental Health Counselor with These Tips
When you work as a mental health counselor, you don't just help people learn how to live with their mental health or cope with past trauma.
In many cases, you end up saving a life. You also provide your clients with a quality of life that they likely never thought possible.
When you're ready to grow your practice and enroll in continuing education courses, we know that you want to find a program that doesn’t take time away from your current clients. As long as you have access to the Internet, you can take our courses anywhere, at any time.
This way, you never have to put the quality of your mental health counseling services in jeopardy in order to grow your skill set.
Our courses also come with a long list of CE Approvals.
Get started today making a difference in your practice with online continuing education training. Make sure that you check out our list of available courses and get in touch with us if you have any questions.