Getting MFT certified, though a praise-worthy accomplishment, does not automatically make you a good therapist. That’s why it’s important to take practical steps now that will positively impact your success as a licensed MFT practitioner before you even take the exam.
These practical steps have nothing to do with clients you might see and which issues you might help people overcome but, rather, everything to do with you.
It’s likely you’ve heard the analogy of the airplane oxygen mask. In life, as in a decompressed aircraft, you first must make sure you are okay by securing your own oxygen mask before you help someone else secure theirs. This analogy is especially true when it comes to being a helping professional.
Your self-care is vital to the care of your client.
Family Therapy Magazine features an article in its July/August 2015 issue (Volume 14, No. 4) called “In Pursuit of Self-Care: Heath & Well-Being for the MFT” by Marlon Robinson, MDiv. Robinson writes, “If we fail to care for ourselves, we will lack the state of health to take care of others or the tasks we need to accomplish.”
Robinson personally recommends the Reed model, which concentrates on eight bedrocks of self-care for professionals, represented by the acronym CREATION.