Today, psychology has become so diverse that it can be difficult to choose between this class of professionals. However, if we have the opportunity to know if a psychologist is good or notThis choice will be simpler and much more advantageous for us.
Now … what criteria should we look for to assess the quality of a psychologist?
Criteria for knowing if a psychologist is good
If you are thinking of going to a psychologist or if you are already in therapy and want to know if you have been successful with the chosen professional, you will be interested in knowing these 6 aspects to consider:
1. Formative criteria
We start from an obvious minimum: the psychologist must have a degree (current degree) in psychology. There are professionals who present themselves as therapists, counselors, etc., who do not need to have a degree in psychology.
In addition, additional training is very important. The psychology degree offers a few subjects dedicated to the clinical field, but the rest revolves around other specialties, so it is desirable that the therapist has postgraduate training specializing in clinicians (master or expert type), Which include practices in which to apply theoretical knowledge.
2. Legal criteria
The exercise of our profession has a compulsory membership condition (Which may be visible on the professional’s website, on his invoice or in any other advertisement). In this case, it is only a legal question that happens exclusively to pay an amount to the corresponding school without this implying more experience or professionalism.
who has the title of clinical psychologist or general psychologist is also important. In Spain, the only legal formula to treat patients is either to have gone through the PIR system (opposition which includes several years of rotating clinical practice) which accredits you as a clinical psychologist, or to obtain the title of general psychologist. ., which is currently achieved by a master’s degree.
Exceptionally, professionals who have already practiced before the regulations may be accredited if they respect professional experience, postgraduate training and professional activity in an approved center.
3. Years of experience
Years of experience in the profession bring a plus to the therapist. Although this criterion is not always a guarantee of quality, it is true that the more experience there is, probably the higher the skill level. As a reference, for any skill is considered excellence is achieved after 10 years of practice in a few.
- Maybe interesting: “Psychologists: what they do and how they help people”
4. Opinions and references
The vast majority of psychologists are listed in search engines like Google Maps itself, where patients can post their impressions of us, which can be a guide to how we do our jobs. And of course, direct testimony from another patient that he went through his psychotherapy, is very valuable information, although there are always exceptions for individual differences and what works for one person does not work for another.
5. Internet research
If you search the Internet for a psychologist and Google “psychologists” who are followed by your city, what you need to keep in mind are not the results that appear on the green billboard. This advantageous positioning (first out) is product of an economic investment in Google, But do not talk about the relevance of its content.
While the workings of internet search bots are extremely complex, which causes a page (the psychologist’s website, blog, or articles) to appear if not prepaid, among other things things. this can be a quality guideline.
Spend time comparing different professionals by visiting the information you find about them: their career path, the type of therapy they have been practicing, how long they have been practicing, and if it meets your needs. For example, if you have an anxiety problem, a sex therapist may not be the best fit for you, no matter how well they meet other requirements (experience, fluency, good opinions, etc.)
The criteria to consider in the therapy itself
Other aspects to consider and which are part of the psychotherapy sessions themselves are:
That the questions you ask have a therapeutic purpose
Therapy it’s far from a familiar conversation with a friendAnd, therefore, a therapist should not ask a question out of mere curiosity, but because there is a need to clarify some aspect of the person.
Questions about your job, the reason for a decision, questions from people around you, give clues to the internal and relational dynamics that underlie your life. However, there are other unnecessary questions (for example, if you go to a spinning class and count it as a hobby, that the therapist will ask you which gym you go to, it makes no sense. therapeutic).
The therapist speaks for himself
In order for a patient to understand a problem or a solution, it is not necessary for the therapist to set an example. The protagonist should never be the therapist, but the patient.
It is true that there are useful revelations, (like when you talk about this subject, I sense your aggressiveness or your sadness) because they are a way of reflecting the patient to understand his emotions and what he can generate in him. others. But this revelation should not become a relief for the professional.
For example, in a couples therapy case that the professional reveals that he also has conflicts with his wife, or in an anxiety treatment that serves as an example of when he suffered and tells you his story.
a therapist you don’t have to tell you what to do but to help you determine which is the best option for you. Advice is a reflection of what you think is best for another. The therapist may not know what is best for you, but needs to work with you to find out what is best for you.
The therapist uses external information and brings it to the session
Suppose by chance that your therapist knows someone around you and knows something about you that you haven’t told them. Under no circumstances are you authorized to disclose this information and share it with you.
When a patient consents to analysis in therapy, this relation is only allowed within the walls of the query. Other than that, the therapist ceases to be your therapist and does not have “permission” to analyze you. No matter how close they are in another setting (in a classroom or in the supermarket), they cannot act as such or use the information they perceive from the street in therapy.
Contact outside therapy
Although over time the therapist-patient relationship may become closer or there is more trust between the two, the rule of neutrality it must always be respected. The only way to make therapy work is for the patient to have a therapist, not a friend. As for being out of consultation, it crosses the line from cordiality to camaraderie which distorts the professional relationship.