What is the Worst Aspect of Becoming a Psychologist?

If you are contemplating starting a career in psychology, you may want to consider the worst aspect of becoming a psychologist before you invest your time. It takes a lot of time and also a great deal of money to study to become a psychologist, and most students will focus on all of the advantages of enter the field to push themselves to succeed in school. While learning about the best aspects of becoming a psychologist can help motivate you to succeed, you need to be realistic and consider the not so positive aspects of being a psychologist before you think the career will be all roses and candy. Here are some of the drawbacks of working in the field of psychology that you should consider so that you make a well-informed future career choice.

The Job Can Be Stressful and Emotionally Draining

You can work in a variety of settings as a psychologist, but all settings can be stressful to work in. If you are working with businesses, schools, sports teams, or in a private practice, you should expect to have to work an erratic schedule at times based on the need to resolve specific client issues. It is common for a psychologist to have to shuffle around their own plans to make room for clients or patients who cannot meet during normal business hours. You may also have to make time to work with a patient experiencing a crisis because it is your duty to do so as a medical professional. This can be stressful when you have your own family and your own life to live.

Working erratic schedules is not the only factor that you need to consider before you enter this line of work. You must also consider just how stressful such an emotionally draining position can be. Your job as a psychologist is to help your clients deal with difficult issues that they face. This can be emotionally exhausting for you, because you need to keep a professional face even when you start to feel what is known in the field as burnout. You will need to practice good stress management techniques to cope with the stress and also to deal with the strain of treating patients with some of their more difficult issues. Some professionals have even found it difficult to divide business and personal life.

Decide If You Are Ready to Complete Extensive Training

Now that you know what aspect of the field most psychologists do not like, it is time to decide if you are still interested in entering the field. To become a licensed psychologist, you must spend several years in a college or university earning your undergraduate degree and then your Master’s degree to meet licensing requirements. Once you earn the necessary degree, you will need to complete up to 3000 hours of interning with a supervising professional who already holds a license. For many people, the education required to become a psychologist is enough to scare them away from the field.

If you are willing to put up with the stressful schedule and the emotional strain of the field, now is the time to start researching programs. Be sure to choose a program that is accredited by the American Psychological Association and that has a good reputation in the field. Once you do this, be realistic about the worst aspect of becoming a psychological and weigh the pros and the cons.