Clinical Competition

My sister in law, Brianna, has just qualified as a clinical psychologist. Having never been exposed to one, I’m not 100% clear on what that role entails, but I know enough to understand that the better part of a decade has gone into attaining the qualification. Anyway, she’s itching to get started, and I’m guessing she won’t have a huge amount of trouble finding a job since she’s worked in mental health for several years.

She wants to set up her own practice, but I wonder if she might be jumping the gun a bit – she doesn’t have any experience in running a business, and here on the Mornington Peninsula, psychology clinics are something there can only be so many of. I wouldn’t say that to her, of course.  

Brianna assures me that professional psychological services are something that most people can benefit from at some point in their lives. Such a point, she says, typically arises when people experience some significant life change, whether that’s a death, divorce or becoming a parent.

I asked Brianna if psychologists deal with things like eating disorders and depression. She said that psychology could be involved, but this type of thing is often considered to be more in the medical realm and addressed by a psychiatrist. On the Mornington Peninsula, again, there are existing psychiatric service providers, which could potentially further limit the reach of Brianna’s proposed practice, even though the fields are distinct.

I wonder if she would consider working for one of these existing practices, to get her foot in the door and build her professional expertise. I mean, the girl is only 25 (yep, I’m talking massive overachiever), so I don’t understand why she has to jump into running her own show immediately upon graduating.

Having said all of the above, I think Brianna has made a solid career choice. I remember her considering other possibilities – dietetics, mental health nursing, social work – and thinking that none of them seemed quite right. But this seems to suit her to a T.

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