Private Practice Prep

Posted on by Jen Bingaman, M.A. LMHCA Posted in Addiction, Body Image, Counseling Skills, Couples, Family, How To, Individual, Jobs, Mind, Music Therapy, Spirituality, Theory | 4 Comments

There’s a lot that goes into opening a small business as a therapist, but not nearly as much as I thought. With the exception of those few moments where I’m just completely nervous about the future and this crazy endeavor I’ve gotten myself into, it’s actually been kind of fun.

You know what’s totally weird though? Promoting yourself. If there’s one lesson I’ve had people wag their finger at me for and say, “Don’t fail to do that!” it’s been about marketing my strengths, skills, and abilities. I mean, I know I’m a great therapist and I will get the job done, but other people don’t know that. You can’t really measure if I’m the best, you just have to experience it for yourself. A lot of people have a problem with that idea because it means potentially paying for services only to be disappointed by what they paid for, plus feeling even more upset because they really needed help, took a chance, and ended up feeling likely a lot worse.

So, I’ve been placed in this interesting position where I have to step outside of myself and say, “What are my strengths? What will clients see in me that they won’t get from other therapists?” and then tell the whole world about it. So, do you want to see what I’ve been up to?

The Jen Bingaman Private Practice site

Man, Jesse definitely has a fan club and I am its president and CEO. I seriously can’t imagine my life without him as my partner, much less imagine how stupidly difficult and expensive it would be to start this business without his techspertise (I just made that word up… I like it!). I might have to give him my first born child or something…

Anyway, we still have some small tweaks here and there (pictures, glitz, header), but the site is live and all the copy is there. For those of you who are curious, have the time, the interest, or the expertise, please go to the site and poke around. Let me know if you have any suggestions based on your experience or if you see any glaring spelling or grammatical errors. I’ve looked over it so many times, my eyes are turning to mush.

If you’re feeling really wonderful and generous, especially if you live in Seattle, will you share the site with your friends and family, especially on social media? It goes a long, long way.

Jen Bingaman on Psychology Today

So for those of you who don’t know, Psychology Today is pretty much the go-to resource for people looking for therapy services. They are practically a monopoly, but they also have a pretty decent set-up for showcasing therapists and providing people with a good selection of practitioners in their area. I worked long and hard (and may continue to do so) to get my profile as accurate and authentic as possible since I know a large majority of my web referrals will come from Psychology Today.

Jen Bingaman at Seattle Direct Counseling

I’m really excited about this one. I’m a member of a group practice! I working with two other wonderful therapists, each of us with our own style and skills. I’ll be working from a downtown office one day of the week, providing eTherapy other days. If any of you out there have been interested in eTherapy in the past, the time is nigh! If you don’t live in Washington, there can be some tricky rules about state-to-state internet counseling, so look up the laws for your state before you contact me and share what you find. Man, I am so excited about all of this. It’s going to be such a fun adventure.

I’ve done tons of other less exciting things like get liability insurance, open a business checking account (OK, so that was fun until I had to put money in it… and then spend it), get a business license, and pay lots of stupid fees for all of it. Oh well, you have to spend money to make money, right?

Speaking of spending money… I’m going to need an amazing accountant. Does anyone have any recommendations here is Seattle? There’s a reason why I never majored in Finance.

Tomorrow is Friday. So many good things… including puppies!

This Year

Posted on by Jen Bingaman, M.A. LMHCA Posted in Randomness, Sass | Leave a comment

Is almost over. Bruce the Spruce has served his purpose. I was lucky enough to watch the first four Harry Potter movies on Christmas Eve. I watched the Hobbit in 3-D at the Cinerama yesterday, with 48 frames per second, and I did not like it. Too much. We’re going to have a nice outing for NYE, but nothing crazy. This year is basically over, guys.

Man, what a ride it’s been. Most of this year was spent being so busy that I didn’t have time to think. Now, I’m busy, but not in a way that really occupies my mind. I’m doing menial tasks, building up to a lot of work that starts in 2013. The problem with this situation is that even when I have nothing to occupy my mind, it still finds a way to stay busy… it ruminates. It fixates. I’m trying to feed it good, healthy things that will produce sunshine, rainbows, unicorns, and light sabers, but I’m coming up with all of the things that could go wrong. Preparation is seriously one of the scariest things ever. It’s why clients usually panic or relapse before any actual changes occur. The idea of trying and failing is sometimes more paralyzing than giving it your all and failing spectacularly. If you don’t try, then you always have that nugget to hold to that change is possible late when you’re ready.

I’m ready. There is no better time than the present. I can’t sit here any longer and get things to work any better. I can’t fixate or ruminate about my future if I’m not actively pursuing it. So, it’s time to ramp myself up into this new endeavor. It’s time to take the plunge.

You’ll all know what I’m talking about soon enough. I’m sure you already do. It’s so close, I can taste it.

It is Decided

Posted on by Jen Bingaman, M.A. LMHCA Posted in Brilliant Ideas, Fun., Sass | 2 Comments

I’m working from home today. It’s the Christmas Eve, it’s cold out, but not cold enough for snow and I can’t decide if I’m happy it’s not snowing or if I’m bummed. I was dreaming of a White Christmas… in theory, maybe. Whatever. The point is, I’m working from home today. I have an article to write for The Gottman Blog as well as some other items on my agenda before I can officially waltz into the glory of love and presents waiting for me tomorrow.

I kept wondering to myself, “What should I do today to get in the spirit?” since it’s just me + Patronus all day until Jesse gets home from work. Then, I looked at my Instagram, and I saw this photo…

It was decided. Today, I will watch the Harry Potter Blu-Rays I was given for Hanukkah. Life is so good, man. I think I’ll also bake and cook, because Christmas doesn’t count unless there’s cookies. Happy Christmas Eve, you filthy animals.

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