Clinical mental health counseling has recently emerged as a career for many reasons, the most significant being the increase in mental health challenges worldwide.
A few centuries ago, mental illness was not taken seriously. Even if it was, no one knew how to cure it. The cure was initially associated with mental asylums, which were later found not to be the best place to treat mental illness.
The concept of mental health counseling was introduced in the early 1900s and has emerged as a profession since that time. Before that, mental health counseling was not considered a profession, nor taught in universities.
A mental health counselor’s job is different from that of other professionals. A mental health counselor works with individuals, groups, health care providers, and community agencies to promote mental health. They form a relationship with the client by talking through — and helping solve — their problems.
Mental health professionals also help address other challenges such as addiction and substance misuse, family and parenting issues, stress management, self-esteem, and issues related to ageing and mental health.
Many people have chosen clinical mental health counseling as a career because of its significance to the community. As the number of people experiencing poor mental health has increased, so has the demand for mental health counseling.
Over time, mental health conditions have increased worldwide. In the US alone, the percentage of adults with a mental illness reporting an unmet need for treatment has increased every year since 2011.
Students of Psychology and similar disciplines have come forward to complete a master’s degree in clinical mental health counseling to help people in need.
Although people are pursuing mental health counseling, some do not know what to expect from their future careers. Today, we will explore what mental health counselors can expect after they have completed their studies.
Mental Health Counseling Career Insight
Young students are often passionate about becoming mental health counselors. However, they may not know what it will be like to work in counseling day-to-day. So, here is what a mental health counselor’s career might look like.
- An Exciting Job
One of the reasons for workplace dissatisfaction is a monotonous job where an employee sits in one spot performing repetitive tasks.
The thought of being stuck in a cubicle for a lifetime is not something that suits everyone. Those pursuing mental health counseling are lucky; they will likely never experience this kind of boredom at work, where flexible working arrangements mean they can move between environments. For example, as a mental health counselor, you can work at various locations, including clinics, schools, and private practices.
- Making a Difference
People often dream of making a difference in the world by helping people. That is what you will do as a mental health counselor — help them fulfill their potential.
If you are interested in helping others, you will love your career as a mental health counselor because it will enable you to help students cope at school, rebuild families, or monitor hospital patients’ mental and emotional wellbeing.
- Playing a Part in Reducing Substance Misuse
Addiction is a public health issue costing the US government billions of dollars. As a mental health counselor, you can actively reduce substance misuse in the community, thereby reducing the burden on the healthcare sector.
As a counselor, you will be able to help clients identify the root cause of their addiction and support them by ensuring they go to a rehabilitation facility. You will be pivotal in helping them to understand any trauma and establish healthier coping mechanisms.
- Pursue a Private Career
Some people like to have a job; others would prefer to work for themselves. A mental health counseling career provides opportunities for both kinds of people: those comfortable with working for an employer can find jobs in the educational, corporate, or healthcare industries.
Others can pursue self-employment as mental health counselors, where they take on clients as they wish and work for themselves. However, if they feel the need, they can always hire support staff.
Mental health counseling has great significance today because it represents a profound shift away from mental asylums as a means of treating serious mental illness.
Many people have chosen mental health counseling as a career. One significant reason for this is the increase in adult and child mental health challenges in the US.
A career in mental health counseling is rewarding; it benefits both humanity and the individual.
Every day is different. Mental health counseling also allows people to choose their career path as employees, or in private practice.