A Day in the Life of a Therapist

In this month’s blog I want to open the doors a little and share with you what a typical day is like in my work as a therapist. People are often curious about what I do, but out of respect for the confidentially of our clients you’ll not often hear therapists talking about their ‘day at the office’. At the moment I am working in private practice delivering therapy via Zoom from my home office. I also work at a University as a Senior Lecturer training the therapists of tomorrow. My week is very varied, which is how I like it. Here’s what a typical day in private practise looks like for me …

7am – My alarm goes off and it’s time to get started! Although I’m working from home I like to get into the mindset of work and wear something nice for the day ahead – no PJs allowed! Then it’s downstairs for breakfast which at this time of year is usually a nice bowl of warm porridge.

8am – Catching up with emails, phone calls and social media. I will then go over plans for each appointment of the day.

9am – First client appointment.  I specialise in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for depression and anxiety so people may be asking for help for a wide range of difficulties, such as trauma, obsessive compulsive disorder or body image problems.

10am – Time for coffee and any admin which has been created from the first appointment – usually this will involve making some brief notes, emailing the client any handouts we used in session and making a plan for our next session.

10:30am – Second client appointment of the day. Similar to above – this person may be a new starter or coming to the end of their treatment, I always have people at different stages of the therapy process.

11:30am – Admin time again, I may also need to do some invoices if the person has come to me through a referral agent such as BUPA or Nuffield Health.

12 noon – Lunchtime, usually something quick and healthy like a bowl of soup. I usually eat this whilst watching something escapist like Big Bang Theory or Friends! 

1pm – Third client appointment of the day. By this stage I have probably listened to a lot of difficult things and people often wonder how I cope with this. I consider it a privilege when people trust me with their suffering, and whilst my job exposes me to a lot it also gives me an opportunity to see people overcome it which is the most wonderful thing.

2pm – Admin time. I may need to catch up on emails or phone calls, especially if I’m booking a new client in.

2:30pm – Fourth and final appointment of the day. I usually reserve this time for supervising other therapists or attending my own supervision. Supervision is an important part of a therapist’s work as it ensures that we are providing ethical treatment to our clients and also provides us with a rare opportunity to talk about what is happening in the therapy room.

3:30pm – Time to finish off any administrative odds and ends which usually takes me through to around 4pm when I aim to ‘clock-off’.  After sitting at my computer all day I like to get out for a walk and then do some yoga to unwind.