“I know there is strength in the differences between us. I know there is comfort, where we overlap.” ~ Ani DiFranco
Continued supervision is vital to a therapist’s growth, and helps combat feelings of isolation in private practice. Below I’ve outlined the three different types of supervision, all of which can be done individually and/or in group formats. Refer to the guidelines of your professional associations when setting up your supervision plan.
When starting your private practice, make sure you secure an arrangement with a supervisor and set up a regular schedule of sessions to be determined between the two of you. If financially viable, you may want to get two supervisors with different specialities so you can get differing feedback and the benefit of different experiences, styles and training.
Ways to connect with Supervisors:
- Approach Professors or Instructors from your graduate or training programs that you shared a connection with
- Search online directories for therapists who have the specialities you hope to acquire or gain more proficiency in and approach them
- Search your association’s database to see if they have a listing of available supervisors in your area
Important: Make sure that you maintain a logbook of all of your sessions with your supervisor and have them sign it after each meeting. In many instances, further certifications and trainings will require proof of supervision hours and it is a giant pain in the butt to try and track down this information after the fact. You can create your own logbook or use this sample here –> PPB SUPERVISION LOG
Consultation is very similar to formal supervision except you generally wouldn’t have a formal on-going arrangement. These may be people who specialize in a specific area that you connect with only periodically around specific types of cases.
As you spend time in the field, you will gather a network of colleagues and associates that you can call on to debrief or touch base with around your cases. These relationships may form organically or can be set-up in advance. Although necessary and helpful towards future growth, peer supervision hours are often not considered applicable towards supervision hours for certification purposes. I recommend tracking them anyways so you have a record.