Private practice can be an exciting step for a new clinician, maybe even the dream you’ve been waiting for all these post-graduate years. You can be your own boss, do the clinical work you love, create your own schedule, and even earn a good living!
And there are so many moving parts to a practice, especially when you’re just beginning. One important aspect of our work that can be difficult to find is good clinical supervision. And while individual supervision with an experienced clinician can be rewarding and helpful, clinical group supervision also has a lot to offer!
7 Benefits of Clinical Group Supervision
1. Reduce Isolation While You Increase Networking
The group setting can counter the isolating nature of being a therapist in private practice. It is truly grounding and enlivening to have a private space to go each week, see your colleagues and share your clinical and business struggles. In addition, it sets the stage for networking with known clinicians. This can lead to referrals from professionals who have become familiar with your work.
2. Get Help With Practice Issues
- Setting fees
- Setting boundaries with clients
- Ideas for getting new patients
- Getting clear on practice goals
- Sharing resources
Everything about your practice issues are on the table for receiving assistance.
3. Tease Out Your Countertransference Reactions
Therapists have an ethical duty to provide the best care possible. Clinical group supervision can help you separate your own history from that of any patient you encounter. This, in turn, can bring you a deeper grasp of what the patient is struggling with. Sometimes, just talking about a case brings a greater understanding of that case.
4. Clinicians Learn to Supervise Other Clinicians
Part of the beauty of a group is the ability to help others with their clinical work. Helping others makes us stronger while increasing our self-esteem. The group therapy setting is also useful in improving our listening skills and hearing in a new way.
5. Feedback from Many Different Sources
As with the clients, clinicians benefit from hearing a variety of viewpoints. Working closely with colleagues can provide affirmation about the difficult, yet common feelings that arise in our profession, e.g. hating a patient, over-gratifying a patient, guilty feelings, self-doubt, etc.
6. Supervision is a Form of Self-Care
Some of the material patients bring us can be hard to manage alone. Supervision provides an outlet and a way to work through some of the vicarious trauma we experience with patients.
7. The Affordability Factor
The affordability of group makes quality clinical supervision within reach for all clinicians, especially those just getting started in their careers.
Becoming a therapist can be a fulfilling and satisfying choice. However, it comes with a lot of responsibility. In addition, developing your career will be an ongoing process. Keeping an open mind about other options — like clinical group supervision — is an excellent way to honor both the process and the responsibility that comes with it. We can be at our best when we are learning, evolving, and challenging ourselves. Interacting with all the participants of group therapy presents us with fertile ground for such crucial growth. As noted above, the benefits are well worth the challenge.