I am getting a lot of calls these days for my private practice. Thankfully, my clients almost always tell me why they called me (rather than, or in addition to, the thirty-seven thousand OTHER therapists in Santa Fe…) It’s almost always about two things. OK,–let’s call it three.
- My profile felt genuine, welcoming, and showed “personality”
- I do both “Life Coaching” and “Therapy”
- I do not want to get us lost in 1981, or 1999, and certainly not in 1954–I want to work with your life NOW
OK, so what do those things mean?
Well, I gotta be honest—I (and a few of my therapist friends) have read the profiles on Psychology Today or Goodtherapy.org, or wherever, and man, they often really suck. Rigid, written BY the therapist in the third person, removed, distant, all about the therapist and not at ALL about you, and how you are going to be helped by seeing them, claims to work with everything and everybody under the sun (which any therapist will tell you is baloney…) And a bunch of these are people that I KNOW, who are really great! They just don’t show it on their profile….
I am a pretty regular guy, I love humor, I am very approachable, and anybody who wants to call me Jim does (I don’t stand on the “Dr. Nolan” thing.) So I tried to write my profile that way. And we all know that therapeutic success is largely a function of the relationship we create between therapist and client, so a client wants to FEEL that in reading a profile. Pretty simple stuff, really..
(Side bar disclosure: When I re-started my private practice on January 1, 2016, I had NO IDEA if this would “work.” The cool part was that I did not really need more work than I already had, so I figured if everybody thought my presentation was awful, then I would have more time to play guitar and write poetry or blog–so there was no “lose” option to just being totally transparent and out there in my profile…)
And then there’s the Life Coaching thing—what does THAT mean? Well, it means, among other things, that we are NOT going to be only, or maybe even primarily, “Problem-Focused.” Of course, something is going on in your life that you are not wild about, or you would not be calling me—you’d be going to the beach. OK, so maybe not in Santa Fe, but hey, it’s a metaphor. But we are going to focus too on what is going RIGHT in your life; we look at your strengths, dreams, aspirations, manifestations, hopes, and goals. As they say, sometimes in life you need to get from -3 to +2, and other times, you want to get from +5 to +9.
Focus on the Past vs. Focus on Life in the Now & the Future
And the 1954 thing. A lot of therapists work deep into your past, and I just do not want to do that, and more often than not, I do not think it is useful at all, other than to surf over the highlights and get on back to 2017. That’s a controversial point of view, but it IS mine, and clients who want to talk about stuff mom did or did not do thirty years ago will have no problem finding therapists who are delighted to do just that. I just don’t happen to be one of them, and it seemed important to make that clear in my profile.
Anyway, I love this work. My life has been blessed in a million ways, and I have a strong commitment to empowering others to bring their lives up to that “Holy Cow, Are You Kidding Me?” place, when possible. “Coaching” helps make that happen. Staying focused on problems, and “Psychopathology” (what insurance companies pay for) alone will not help you get to those places high up in the trees, or even the clouds.
I am not afraid of, nor will I ignore or avoid your “baggage.” But I don’t want us to get caught on the Baggage Claim Carousel for months, either–I want to get us on the next available flight, and I want you to be the pilot…
Stuff going on? Give me a call. Or better yet, text me, at 505-699-7616. I am an INFP, after all, an Introvert, and texting works just fine. Or check out my web site, and see if anything resonates. It’s drjamesmichaelnolan.com, and I have a bunch of articles there…
Anyway, thanks for reading, and I hope you have a great 4th of July long weekend…