Currently work as a psychotherapist and looking for a career change? There are many jobs where you can transfer many of your therapy skills while getting to work in a fresh new environment. Below are a few alternative career options for therapists to consider.
Behavioral health consultant
Behavioral health consulting involves working with patients who have health problems (physical or mental) and helping them to tackle behavioral issues that could be leading to these health problems. This is very much an extension of therapy work, as it typically requires getting to the bottom of why people think and feel a certain way in order to help them change their attitude. Behavioral health consultants can work in a range of different environments from hospitals to government agencies.
Life coaches help people to progress in their lives and become more fulfilled. This could include helping people to find the right career or helping them overcome personal challenges. Life coaches can host workshops and seminars, but typically work one-on-one with clients. While therapists aim to treat mental health problems, life coaches focus more on helping people make life-changing decisions. However, a therapist background can still help when helping people to overcome mental obstacles to achieve life goals. Most life coaches are self-employed.
A teacher’s primary role is to educate people. However, teachers need to also be able to provide a level of counseling in order to help students with personal issues that may be affecting their education progress. This could include helping individual students overcome anxiety or helping settle disputes. You could teach a subject in a school, or become a private tutor. In either case, a teaching qualification is needed. If you’re teaching a specific subject, you’ll also need a degree in that subject. It’s worth noting that there are niches within teaching to consider that could require more therapy skills such as special needs education.
What’s the difference between a psychotherapist and psychiatrist? While a psychotherapist aims to help treat mental health issues through conversation and mental exercises, a psychiatrist does this while also having the authority to prescribe medication and carry out physical tests to check for physical abnormalities. In essence, psychiatrists are more like doctors. A degree in medicine is typically required to work in psychiatry and then specialist added training. While this can take years to complete, a background as a psychotherapist will often help you get qualified more quickly.
Relationship counselors help people to overcome problems that they may be having in a relationship. While this typically involves helping partners to communicate better or change bad habits, it can also involve helping partners to overcome mental obstacles, which a therapy background can benefit from. As a relationship counselor, you should have a good understanding of relationships and should be a good mediator (you will be dealing with a lot of conflict). There are many related specialties that you can also look into such as dating coaches, sex therapists and divorce counselors.