Professional Identity 101: Calling
One of the questions that I usually ask other counselors when I meet them is - “why did you choose to become a Counselor?”
Most of the time they start out with a story about how they have always been the friend who others came to for advice or their own story of going to a counselor and what they experienced. However, somewhere in the conversation, they say “I feel like I was called into counseling.”
Calling - a strong urge toward a particular way of life or career.
I remember my own call into the profession. In 1999, I took a Psychology of Adjustment Class as just something to do. The professor had us create a five year career/life plan. I had created my plan and it was based on getting a MBA and continuing in the business industry.
During our class discussion, there was a classmate sitting next to me and he stated that he was going to Trevecca University to get a degree in counseling. It was like an alarm went off in me - my strong urge. I called to get more information and the rest is history.
There are several routes we can take to answering our call into the profession. The path may not be clear at the beginning but as we gain more experience the path opens more. I remember when I answered the call into the profession, I questioned why. The path did not look like I expected. My professional journey has been one filled with twists and turns.
My first job was working in community mental health as a Counselor II work with SPMI (severely persistently mentally ill) adults. Then I moved into a supervisor position that took me on a different journey. Now I am working with mental health professionals in my clinical and leadership services business.
Understanding that the work we do is a calling is essential to creating a solid professional identity.
How did you answer your call into the profession?
Dr. Lacrecia~The Confident Counselor Leader
P.S. I created a Niche Defining Worksheet that you may find helpful. Click here to get a copy.
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Dr. Lacrecia is a passionate leader dedicated to empowering mental health professionals with the resources, guidance and strategy to create lasting impactful careers.