When it comes to growing our business and clientele as therapists, we all know the value in having goals to keep us focused and on the road to success.
- See ____ # clients per week
- Make $ _______ money per month
- Write ____ # blog posts a year
- Update social media ____ #
Those are some of the goals I used to think mattered to me. Until I realized, they don’t. All of those things are important and certainly need to be addressed. However, when it comes to your goals, they need to have more heart.
Unfortunately, some of the old questions I would ask myself when setting goals were:
- What do successful private practices look like?
- What are other therapists in private practice doing?
- How many clients am I supposed to see per week to appear successful?
Ya know what happened when I spent my time trying to do what I thought I was supposed to be do based on what I saw other people doing? I didn’t meet my goals. And as a bonus, I got to carry around a bag of shame and self-loathing each day to help remind me that I definitely was a failure. So. Much. Fun!
Things changed though when I started asking myself questions from the heart. Questions like:
- What are my personal values?
- What excites me about my job?
- What do I most enjoy doing during my work hours?
- What do I want my practice to look like 5 years from now?
The problem I see with so many people when it comes to setting goals for their business is that they base them off of other people’s expectations, leading to either a) reaching their goals, but feeling unfulfilled, or b) not reaching their goals because, as it turns out, it’s really hard to achieve something that isn’t compelling to you on a personal level.
But what if we were to all pause for a moment amongst the franticness and hustle of private practice to check in with ourselves and see what we want for our business? What we want for our lives? Check in with ourselves to see what things actually matter to us.
Because if we keep basing our goals off of what other therapists, podcasts, facebook communities, and ingrained expectations tell us, those goals will continue to fall flat. But once we tune into ourselves and find goals that excites us? The world of private practice will become much more fulfilling.
Callye Lawrence is a therapist who specializes in working with 20 and 30 somethings struggling with anxiety, perfectionism, and existential crises. Some of her favorite work though is providing consultation to therapists looking to build their first private practice. When not in therapy mode, she loves basking in the sunshine, hanging out with her dogs, watching lots of stand-up comedy, and playing soccer. She’s a big-time animal lover and would have lions as pets if it weren't for her fear of being eaten alive.