When I started to work full time as a psychologist I was an adult. I mean a real adult therefore, I could do what I felt was good: not the same thing I learnt at the University.
I learned not to take home my clients' problems. After I finished college I really tried to meet my teachers' professional expectations and it seemed like it was working because my clients found me useful. But on a certain level it was somehow fake to me, I wasn't truly myself.
Should I be empathetic but when the person goes out the door should I close off my feelings? Or could he or she get into my mind between two sessions but without feelings? Or should I work with all of my involvements, difficulties and joys that somehow are related to my clients only in one hour a week with my supervisor? Every time after every session with every client, I felt that there were things that were interesting to me somehow got to me, called my attention – so do I have to go to see my supervisor every day?! Deep inside I felt that psychology is my calling but I'm not comfortable in the way college formed me to be a psychologist.
So I took courage and started to do what felt good. I started to pay attention to myself. To my feelings, to my judgments, to my boundaries, to my unreasonable pleasure or any other important things that could arise from the clients' topic or from other things that affected me in my earlier life. I recognized soon that it's weak if I only work with my brain because I'm not sure that I can move my mindset or my habits or my reflections just because I understand where I should move them. So I started to work with my gut level, too. The difference was radical!
I could experience immediately and clearly that with this methodology I can be a more clear mirror to my clients. A surface that they look into to have a bigger chance to see themselves. Of course I'll never be a pure mirror but I have the ambition to be one.
So that's what I have been doing since then: I prepare for every therapeutic session by shaping myself. I run, meditate, do yoga, do movement meditations and use breathing techniques to clear myself. I gave a name to this methodology: Mirror Therapy. It can be used not just as a therapeutic method but for every kind of relationship: with kids, partners, parents, colleagues, friends, etc. And the best thing is that it's incredibly thrilling!