Private Practice Prep

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!

Share YOUR Story

Most of the people who read this blog have an interest in psychology. Some have specific experiences with overcoming issues with mental health. Whether it’s depression, anxiety, a divorce, or something else, we all have moments in our lives where we’ve struggled. I started this blog mainly to talk about things I’m interested in, primarily the mind, how it relates to the body, and to discuss it in a way that didn’t sound overly clinical or sterile.

I write here Monday through Friday about all of those things and I enjoy it. It’s cathartic and I have been touched by all of the people who have reached out to me to share their stories about their minds. Whether it’s overcoming crippling self-doubt or working with something like bipolar disorder, I’ve heard a lot of it and it’s inspired me to keep writing and working, even when the going seems tough.

I want to give anyone out there reading the opportunity to share their story about their mental health journeys. It can be a courageous act sharing something so personal, but it’s also incredibly therapeutic. If there’s anything this blog – and life – has taught me is that I’m not alone. My sadness, my happiness, my life may feel unique, but I know while the combined set of experiences cannot be matched, each one on it’s own could be intimately understood by someone else. It’s a feeling of freedom.

So if anyone out there wants this opportunity, wants to share a story they feel would fit this mold, please e-mail me at jen [at] thepursuitofsassiness [dot] com. I’ve shared my own mental health journey here. I’m open to all ideas, from things like flight anxiety to trauma, whatever you want to share is cool with me. I just want people to understand that mental health is a constant process, not a singular experience. I’d love for you to share your story.