Counseling, and indeed healthcare in general, offer one of the most stable career paths one can embark upon. The world will always need qualified people to administer and deliver healthcare services and the rise of online degrees has meant that many prospective students are now considering a career in mental health care, for which the requirements to qualify are usually less stringent. There is also a perception in some corners that doctors and counselors are bound tightly to their rule books and standard procedures, which means there is not as much opportunity for individuals to innovate within these fields.
This is a false, or at least massively simplified, view of the role of a counselor and doctor. While it is true that there are certain guidelines and procedures to be followed (and for good reason), hospitals and other healthcare providing institutions are constantly looking for new and innovative approaches to healthcare that can offer a better quality of service. Below are some of the reasons why free and independent thinkers should consider a career in healthcare and why some of the apprehensions potential students have are unfounded or misguided.
As a counselor, you will have people placing a great deal of both trust and expectations upon you. To be an effective counselor, you must be able to inspire patients’ trust and to treat them with respect, which shows that you value their trust. Some people find this level of trust to be a burden, but for most, it is recognized as the best opportunity one will have to truly influence their patients’ lives for the better. As a counselor, you can advise patients not just on how to best approach their mental health issues but also talk with them about how they can get and stay inspired enough with the world around them to truly make a break from their mental illness. Being able to connect with patients on this level appeals to a lot of free thinkers.
One of the effects of having a higher proportion of counselors taking the route of an online masters in counseling rather than going through a traditional education system is that the field of counseling now has many more practitioners who are not tied to orthodoxy and who bring with them fresh ideas and approaches previously unknown to the field. If you would like to be part of this new wave of counselors who are beginning to shape the way we look at mental health treatment then you should consider studying for an online counseling degree.
Making A Tangible Difference
Perhaps the biggest payoff from qualifying and practicing as a counselor comes from knowing that you are making a real, quantifiable difference to people’s lives. As you see patients’ week after week and build a connection, you will be able to see the fruits of your efforts first hand.
With rates of mental health issues in the general population on the rise, the demand for qualified counselors is expanding faster than it can be filled. An online counseling degree is a very positive first step towards a rich and rewarding career.