Part of the challenge for students of clinical psychology is understanding that the career of a psychologist tends to unfold in phases. And, that some parts of this process consist of self-doubt and fear. Sharing the joys – and the challenges – of a career in clinical psychologist can help normalize the experiences that are very common, but may feel to an individual psychologist like something has gone wrong. Borrowing from Jeffrey Kottler’s (2012) depiction of the different stages in the career of a psychologist, we asked MSP faculty and staff to share their perspectives of how it felt along the way.
Stage 1: What if I don’t have what it takes?
Shannon Chavez-Korell, PhD
Stage 2: If only I could be like you
La-Toya Gaines, PsyD
Stage 3: I can’t believe I get paid for doing this
Heidi Martin, PsyD
Stage 4: I seem to know what I’m doing.
Ann Smith, PsyD
Stage 5: Hey, I’m really good at this!
Ryan Blackstock, PsyD
Stage 6: What if I’m not really doing anything?
Fran Brown, PsyD
Stage 7: What in me is getting in the way?
Lee Bach, PhD
Stage 8: You want to be like me?
Ruth Anan, PhD
Kottler, J. A. (2012). The therapist’s workbook: Self-assessment, self-care, and self-improvement exercises for mental health professionals (2nd ed., pp. 10-16). Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.