Psychotherapists provide counseling for people facing issues that are causing mental and emotional distress. They can usually treat a variety of issues including but not limited to depression, anxiety, addiction, eating disorders, or relationship troubles. Psychotherapists are healers, analyzers, and contributors who improve their patients’ well-being by helping find solutions that reinforce positive feelings and perspectives. They do so by listening to clients talk about their problems, providing an open mind in a safe space, taking notes, and providing feedback or encouragement. A psychotherapist must be an expert at communication, be understanding and non-judgmental, and driven by problem-solving. They should also be socially aware, observant, possess strong analytical skills, and keep each patient’s records organized and confidential.
Psychotherapists generally specialize in a chosen field, but may also specialize in a particular age group. Some psychotherapists choose to work primarily with adults while others work better with adolescents. They often work in hospitals, local clinics, or schools. Overall, those looking to become psychotherapists are required to have a master’s degree and train under clinical supervision for at least four years so that they are able to use a wide range of knowledge to identify the correct methods appropriate to each individual person’s needs. Depending on what specialization they are in, psychotherapists will also need a license certifying their knowledge of approved practices. People that study psychotherapy can also find related jobs in social work or human resources. Jobs for psychotherapists are expected to grow by 14% by 2026.