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How to become a therapist?

Becoming a psychotherapist is not easy. It requires a lot of effort, but it’s worth it! But before talking about how to become a therapist, let’s start, first of all, with the reasons that push you to undertake this professional career.

Why become a psychotherapist

The profession of a psychotherapist is one of the most fascinating for many reasons:

  • Because you will know yourself, your limits, and your possibilities, and you will deepen the knowledge of others. The object of your work will be the mind, human behavior, interpersonal relationships. Psychopathology is nothing more than a magnifying glass of standard processes. Working with neurotic, psychotic, personality disorder people and their emotions and feelings will broaden your knowledge about yourself and the people close to you.
  • Most professions ask you to give your time to something external to you. Someone is satisfied with their job. By acquiring specific skills, they improve their self-esteem because they get money for themselves and those they love. Others feel frustrated, even if they earn well because they are cheated, expropriated of their time, dried up on a personal level. They think they are giving a lot and not receiving. They feel impoverished from the work experience because they distance themselves from themselves and from what matters most to them during working hours. The psychotherapist, on the other hand, explores himself as he explores and interacts with his patients.
  • Because you will inevitably transform yourself while you will help your patients change, find creative solutions to solve their problems, leave dysfunctional patterns of behavior to embrace new ways of perceiving themselves and relating to others. It is a process that begins the moment you start your training and will never end. What you will learn to face psychopathology, intrapsychic and interpersonal conflicts, deviant behaviors you will inevitably apply to yourself, starting a process of personal and relational transformation that will accompany you throughout your professional life. Psychotherapeutic activity always confronts you with new and unexpected problems that open up new reflections and questions about yourself and those around you.

How to become a psychotherapist: the training path and the steps to be faced

The path to becoming a psychotherapist is challenging because it requires many skills, more than other professions. You will deal with the mind and human behavior, an extremely complex subject. 

What’s more, your customers will have non-negligible psychological skills

Everyone, without exception, devotes time, energy, and commitment to trying to solve their individual and relational problems. Even those who engage in self-destructive behaviors do not do it out of ignorance or lack of responsibility, but because those behaviors, however dysfunctional for those who judge them from the outside, without knowing their world, are the ones that most solve their most pressing problems.

The position of the other professionals is quite different. Please think of the clients of lawyers or notaries: they are generally ignorant of the law, of its labyrinths, and even more of the judicial context. Even the clients of the architect or the construction engineer are unaware of building and construction techniques.

Furthermore, only the therapeutic profession puts the person of the professional into play so firmly that all schools deal with their students, albeit in a different way, also as persons and try to increase their reflexivity.

All this is to tell you that you will have to acquire high skills and continue to deepen them in your professional activity. There is no place in this profession for improvisation and superficiality.

But how to become a psychotherapist, and what are the steps you will have to face?

1. Degree in psychology or medicine and surgery to become a therapist

In our country, the therapeutic profession is well regulated. We are lucky, and above all, our users are because we have professional associations that protect the quality of the training and treatments offered. In the world, both a degree in psychology and a degree in medicine and surgery allow you access to the psychotherapeutic profession. 

The training they provide is very different, but the differences, however significant, will not have a decisive influence on the therapist you become. 

The degree in Psychology provides you with more tools to understand the mechanisms underlying the various therapeutic techniques.

A medical degree gives you more tools to understand neurophysiological mechanisms. In many psychopathologies and the effect of drugs and psychotropic substances on the nervous system and general physical conditions.

2. Qualification to practice as a psychologist or doctor to become a therapist

The state examination and registration in the register of psychologists. Or doctors is an indispensable step for the exercise of the psychotherapeutic profession and to enroll. As in other schools of psychotherapy. 

However, you can pre-register even if you have not yet obtained the qualification. As soon as you are enrolled in the Order of Psychologists or Doctors. You will be able to formalize your registration. 

Enabling is, therefore, an indispensable step. Without it, you will not be able to continue your path to become a future psychotherapy specialist!

3. Four-year school of specialization in psychotherapy to become a therapist

A Master’s degree and a state exam are prerequisites for accessing. The profession of psychotherapist and enrolling in the psychotherapy school. Only when you have obtained the specialization diploma from another school can you enroll in the Register of psychotherapists.

Beyond the legal aspects, the one who trains you to become a therapist is the psychotherapy school . 

Choosing the psychotherapy school is therefore crucial. You have to do it with the utmost attention.

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