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6 thoughts on “Who’s Your Ideal Client?

  • August 12, 2011 at 10:19 am
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    Wishing you only idea clients and wondering who will take on the less than ideal clients. if you were an oncologist would you only take on clients who had a75 per cent or better chance of remission, those with a good sense of humor and positive outlook?

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    • August 12, 2011 at 12:02 pm
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      Parson, Thanks for your comment. I am coming from the assumption that therapists take on difficult or “less than ideal” clients all of the time, but have never considered defining who they want to work with. The good news is that everyone therapist has different passions, reason for being in the field, and different definitions of their “ideal client”. I have consulted with a therapist who loves working with war vets with PTSD who are “rough around the edges”, and another who’s passion is helping children with trauma.

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  • October 10, 2011 at 4:05 am
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    Julie..

    Reading this article made me feel very sad. All I can say is thank God my therapist did not have an ‘ideal client’ criteria to filter me through. Thank God she was willing to take me on – and stick with me through some harrowing twists and turns. I was a mess four years ago.. and I’m just glad I didn’t end up on your doorstep.

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  • October 11, 2011 at 4:10 pm
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    Hi Solstice,

    You may not be aware that this blog is for mental health professionals who are building a private practice, and this post in particular is designed to get therapists thinking about who they most enjoy working with so they can build a fulfilling and successful practice.

    Clients have certain characteristics they are seeking in a therapist, for example, gifted in empathy and easy to talk to, at least 5 years experience, training in EMDR, works sliding fee scale, experience working with trauma, convenient office location, etc., so why is it so sad to think that therapists might have characteristic that they prefer in clients?

    This is not a criteria with which to “filter” clients, but an invitation for therapists to explore who they enjoy working with and how to attract more clients with those characteristics to their therapy practice.

    Funny thing is, I’ve had 3 clients this week say something similar to me that you’ve said about your therapist in your comment: “Thank you for taking me on and sticking with me through my darkest times.” If you had landed on my doorstep a few years ago we might be having this conversation face to face.

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    • July 16, 2014 at 1:29 am
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      This is a beautiful answer, Julie. And, the truth is, the internet and therapist profiles are making it more and more possible for clients to pick THEIR ideal therapist! It is win-win, in my opinion. Over the years, I have had clients unhappy with me because I was too young or too old or had “only” one child (and they had several) or I didn’t share their religion, etc. I realize that I am not everyone’s ideal therapist just as every client is not my ideal client. But how wonderful when the ideal client and ideal therapist are sitting across from each other and the work is fulfilling for both!

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  • January 11, 2015 at 3:04 am
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    i think the largest shift for me was coming from agency work where you took whoever walked in the door and to private practice where it’s important to know your I deal client, I do find myself sometimes seeing people a little outside my ideal and I can tell

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