The beginning of the year is always the time for resolutions, and this holds true for private practice, too. The top resolutions mental health professionals tell me they’re making this year are increasing practice income, cultivating new connections and referral sources, how to make dealing with insurance less time consuming and stressful, how to attract more ideal clients through branding, and publishing that book you want to write. Oh, and I almost forgot—how to add coaching to your practice.
So, here are the five best books to help you and your practice meet your goals for more and better with less stress in your private practice.
1. Increasing Practice Income
If your New Year’s resolution is increasing the income in your practice by money, doing good, and having fun, then Chellie Campbell’s From Worry to Wealthy: A Woman's Guide to Financial Success Without the Stress is the one for you. Reading this will help guide you to creating a richer and more fulfilling practice based on your values, interests, and needs.
So if you’re interested in more income, time off, time for home and family, charging a fair price while contributing to the greater good, From Worry to Wealthy is a practical and friendly ticket to fulfilling that resolution.
2. Cultivating New Connections and Referral Sources
If you are not a natural networker—most therapists find networking challenging—and would like your own personal guide for what to do to make new connections with others and to cultivate new referral sources, How to Work a Room: The Ultimate Guide to Making Lasting Connections—In Person and Online by Susanne Roane will give you the guidance you need.
This small book is the encyclopedia of how to easily and practically make connections with others whether you’re online or in person—just reading the table of contents is reassuring and encouraging! So whether you’re interested in opening lines for greeting and meeting, tips for introducing yourself and your practice or how to build bridges, bonds, and business relationships, check out How to Work a Room and find the answers you seek.
3. Make Dealing with Insurance Time Consuming and Less Stressful
If your practice depends on insurance reimbursement as either an in-network or out-of-network provider, Barbara Griswold’s Navigating the Insurance Maze: The Therapist's Complete Guide to Working with Insurance—And Whether You Should is for you.
Navigating the Insurance Maze is the must have reference for every therapist. This easy-to-use manual guides you through what every therapist needs to know about insurance—and answers the questions you have. Joining plans, instructions for claim forms, how to get more sessions approved, how to make appeals, common therapist mistakes, and how to stay out of trouble are all part of the great value of Barbara’s seventh edition. It’s well worth the price.
4. Attract More Clients Through Branding
If your resolution for this year is to attract more clients—more ideal clients—to your practice then you'll be really interested in reading or listening on Audible to Robin Fisher Roffer’s Make a Name for Yourself: 8 Steps Every Woman Needs to Create a Personal Brand Strategy for Success. Robin says it best on her Big Fish Marketing Website because it greets you with the words, “We guide you to write, tell, and live your greatest story.” Her book does just that.
Make a Name for Yourself shows you how to easily identify your own unique traits and talents for career success and personal fulfillment. This friendly, fun, practical, and easy to apply book is like attending a workshop and learning the 8 steps that “unearth your authentic self to develop a brand that reflects your natural talents, abilities, and passions.”
I recommend this book to practice coaching clients and every single one has said that they were very surprised by how much they enjoyed reading this book and how effective it was in helping them to identify what attracted the clients they love to work with—and to more easily and authentically, write, tell, and share the story of who they work with, why, and how they successfully work with those in their practice.
5. Publish That Book You Want to Write
If writing and publishing that book you’ve been wanting to write is your resolution for this year then Sylvia Cary, LMFT’s The Therapist Writer: Helping Mental Health Professionals Get Published is the book you’re going to want. As Sylvia tells it, getting a book published can lead to more—more attention, referrals, business, and money. She’s also right when she says it’s one of the quickest ways for a therapist to become known as an expert.
The Therapist Writer is a practical, useful, easy to use guide that helps you make your book idea into a completed manuscript. With Sylvia’s guidance—and she knows the ropes since she’s a local LMFT as well as a writer and book coach—you’ll figure out what to write, how to get it written, and how to market and sell it once its complete. If you’re wanting to have your book published, then this little volume belongs on your bookshelf. This is the book I recommend to those I train and coach who have a book on their wish list. Make yours happen this year by getting this one.
Bonus: How to Add Coaching to Your Practice
If you’re interested in how you can add coaching to your practice this year then David B. Ellis’Life Coaching: A Manual for Helping Professionals is a good choice for you to purchase. This is one of the best overall coaching books I’ve come across, read, and used. It’s written to assist the currently practicing mental health professional—one who’s already been specifically trained as a counselor, minister or social worker—begin practicing as a life coach.
Life Coaching, like the other books in this list, is a practical, easy to read and apply, step-by-step guide that helps therapists add coaching to their practices. One of the reasons I like this book is that David B. Ellis has an interesting approach to coaching. He doesn’t view it as merely skills training and advice, he views coaching as assisting people in creating their own solutions, arriving at their own answers, and discovering options for themselves through using a coaching framework and approach. This is a way of working that therapists can appreciate as well as enjoy when doing coaching work with clients.
So now you have this recommended list to aid you in your goals for the year. Have fun in looking over these resources and choosing the one that’s right for you.
Lynne Azpeitia, LMFT, AAMFT Approved Supervisor, is in private practice in Santa Monica where she works with Couples and Gifted, Talented, and Creative Adults across the lifespan. Lynne’s been doing business and clinical coaching with mental health professionals for more than 15 years, helping them develop even more successful careers and practices. To learn more about her in-person and online services, workshops or monthly no-cost Online Networking & Practice Development Lunch visit www.Gifted-Adults.com orwww.LAPracticeDevelopment.com.
Lynne Azpeitia, LMFT
For 10+ years Lynne Azpeitia has helped therapists to live richer and happier lives through her workshops, private practice and career coaching, and her practice consultation groups which train, support, and coach licensed therapists, interns & students how to create and maintain a successful, thriving clinical practice and a profitable career