Overcoming Limiting Beliefs In Private Practice

Limiting beliefs are one of the most common reasons personal brands fail or struggle to grow. When deciding on the next steps in growing your brand, you need to explore whether there are any limiting beliefs holding you back. And, if you’re like me, you might experience a period of denial of your limiting beliefs before the growth really starts to happen! 

In this episode, I talk about two of the major limiting beliefs in Private Practice that I struggled with myself. I also discuss some of the most common limiting beliefs in private practice and how you can overcome them. 

  • Overcoming limiting beliefs related to fee setting.
  • Limiting beliefs surrounding delegation.
  • Whether or not to accept insurance in private practice.
  • Are there enough clients for everyone?
  • Do you need additional income streams to have a financial viable brand? 


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Today's episode is all about some of the most common limiting beliefs in private practice. And I'll be the first to admit that a few years back, I would hear about limiting beliefs. And I'd be the first to say, I don't struggle with that. That's not me. But that wasn't the truth. Stay tuned to hear about two major limiting beliefs that I really struggled with whether I wanted to admit it or not. And some of the other common limiting beliefs that I work with other therapists and overcoming to build their practice and grow their brand.

Thank you for joining us today. Today we are talking about overcoming limiting beliefs in private practice. And this is something that is really important to me because for a long time, I struggled with my denial of my limiting beliefs. I was a person who thought, oh, limiting beliefs, I really don't struggle with that. I don't have limiting beliefs, I'm doing fine and if I am not then it's business because of other reasons, but it's not because I have any thoughts or mindsets that are holding me back. And first of all, obviously, to think that as a therapist looking at myself looking back now I'm like, how would I have ever come to that conclusion that I have no limiting beliefs. But that's where I was. I'm just being honest. I'm not necessarily proud that I was there. But that's where I was. And so I don't know if there are many other therapists that struggle with their own denial of their limiting beliefs. But that's really what has led me to do this episode and really have this discussion. So I'm going to start by talking about a couple of the limiting beliefs that I later realized that I did struggle with and that were holding me back in really being able to move forward and build my practice and my brand in the way that I wanted to. So the first thing that I struggled with was fee setting. And honestly, I see this one is really, really common within therapy, and we're going to talk about this on a few different levels. But I didn't struggle with setting a particularly low fee but I struggled with thinking that I couldn't set a fee. I was at the higher end of the scale for my area, but I thought I could not price myself outside of the market. So I can't charge more than the market average in my area or the high end of the market range in my area, or else I won't have any clients. And I struggled with this and I work with therapists all the time that struggle with this, whether it's saying things like I can't charge more than 150 a session, because that's what my supervisor charges or I can't charge more than $200 a session because Joe has the same certifications as me and he's been doing this for 25 years and that's what he charges. I can't charge more than him. And so whether it's comparing ourselves to a specific degree or a specific specialty area, or a certain amount of experience or practice, we have some reason that we can't set our fees well above a certain threshold. And I did, I struggled with that I priced myself at the high end of the market, but I didn't feel like I could go above that, because other very experienced therapists that I had a lot of respect for, and they had a lot more years experience than me, were charging this much. Who was I to charge more than that? The shift started happening for me when I started to really look at the complete value of what I was doing. So not only how much am I charging, but what's the value of the results that my clients get? And how quickly do they get those results, right? It's more than just a number. What we do is about something that's meaningful of providing a service to get somebody where they want and need to be emotionally, relationally or otherwise. And so there's a lot of factors that go into it. It's not simply a market average. And I started looking at what kind of income I needed to have to support my family and the lifestyle that I want and need to maintain. And when I made that shift, my fees came much more into alignment with the new way that I was thinking, but that limiting belief really did put a ceiling on what I felt like was the value of my services. The second limiting belief that it took me quite some time to realize that I was struggling with was that I needed to do all the things. I needed to do it all. I couldn't delegate because that was a waste of money. I was going to struggle to be able to train somebody else to do it the way that I did it, or to get the job done right. And that it was a better use of my time and money to for me to do it and get it done right the first time. And again, I know now that I'm not the only one that struggles with this, because I work with therapists all the time that struggle with the same. They don't want to delegate because they feel like the more control that they have over the various pieces of their business, the more control they have over the success of their business, whether it's their practice, personal brands, whatever. But it's this failure to delegate that feels like we're maintaining some control, but in reality, all we're doing is allowing that limiting belief that we need to do it all to limit our growth to limit the growth of our practice limit the growth of our brand. Those are the two biggest limiting beliefs that I feel like I'm looking back in hindsight 2020 that I can say, man, I was stuck in those for a long time. And had I been able to get over those hurdles and get over and beyond those limiting beliefs sooner, I feel like I'd be in a very different place right now. But on the flip side, I'm so thankful that I'm now able to push past them. Otherwise, I'd still be stuck back where those limiting beliefs were keeping me. Those are the two biggest that I struggle with. But here's a few others that I really hear other therapists struggling with as I work with them on consulting for their practice growth, and one of them is surrounding insurance. So this is related to the fees, fee setting and kind of capping ourselves at a maximum fee or what a fee should be. But this one about insurance bothers me because I hear so much emotion behind it, and so much shaming from one therapist to another, depending on what side of the coin they're on. So I've heard it both ways. I hear some therapists have a belief that I have to take insurance to have a successful practice. And whoa, let's unpack that for a minute. Okay, what is behind that belief, it's really comes down to a value of services, right? A value of the service that you provide, and not feeling like anybody would find enough value in the service and the outcome is that's really what it's about is the outcome and the changes that you can help your client bring about that nobody would find enough value in that to actually pay money. They're only going to do it if they have to put out a minimal amount of money or if their insurance covers it completely. Wow, that's just not true. That's not true for Our services as therapists, you do not have to take insurance to have a successful practice. The other side of this is that I hear therapist who accept insurance saying that they feel like they went into this profession to help people. And if they don't accept insurance, then they are not helping people. I even heard some therapists go as far as to say, if you are a private pay therapist, and you don't take insurance, your cash pay only, you're part of the problem. And once again, I just say, wow, I mean, let's unpack that. There's so much emotion behind that right to tell another therapist because of the way you set up your business and because of the way you structure your business, you're part of the problem. I don't understand how we benefit from devaluewing or shaming one another as therapists in that way. On the flip side, so doing a complete one at the other thing that I sometimes hear about insurance is therapists who say if I want to have a successful practice, I need to get off insurance plans. I cannot have a successful insurance based practice, I have to be private pay or cash paid. And once again, that's just not true. There are absolutely therapists out there that have very successful, profitable, and meaningful insurance based practices. It's absolutely possible. But when therapists are in bad, ugly on this side of the coin, when therapists are strongly on this side of the spectrum, the you can't take insurance to have a profitable practice. I've heard them say things like good therapists don't accept insurance because they don't need to and ouch. There's lots of excellent therapists out there that accept insurance, not necessarily because they need to, because they want to, or they feel that their way of being the most impactful, and of helping the most people, that's their way of doing that. And that's fine. I don't think there should be any judgment or ridicule in that, no matter which side we're on, I think it's so important for us to realize that there's value in both. And the last thing on this topic of insurance, no matter which end of the spectrum you're on, is why don't we look at the spectrum and say, it's all or nothing we're insurance based, or we're cash pay private pay, because in between those two things, there are a lot of other middle of the road options, whether that's some kind of graduated fee structure. Notice I didn't say sliding scale, but some kind of various range of fees. Whether that's limiting the number of insurance plans that you take, or offering a super bill for out of network reimbursement, I mean, there's a lot of different options that are between those two ends of the spectrum. So it doesn't have to be all one or all the other. we're eliminating a lot of gray when we talk about it in these two stark contrast firms of black and white. But if you find yourself having an emotional and visceral response to another therapist because they don't accept insurance, or they do accept insurance, or things that they stay about how they've chosen to run their practice, I think we need to examine ourselves a little bit and ask why are we having such a strong reaction to that? And that brings me to the next thing that I want to discuss which is the limiting belief of a scarcity mindset. And so this belief is really operating from a perspective of lack. And so it's the belief that there is not ever enough. There's not enough clients, there's not enough money. And so therapists that struggle with this are the ones that they find is so hard to niche down. Sure they do their best work with this type of client. But we can't say no to all the other clients because when I get that call of someone who's looking for services, if I turn them away, I don't know when the next person is going to call me or I need the money, or it's hard to get clients, right. All of these thoughts. All of these beliefs come from a place of lack. There's not enough and so we have to take what we can get when it's available because at some point, it may not be available. That's just not the case. There are plenty of clients out there. There are plenty of people in need of service. Is that we should never hesitate to send that client to someone else who is a better fit for them. Because if they're going to get the results faster with this other person, then that's what's doing that client the best service. And isn't that the kind of brand that we want to run? And isn't that the kind of brand value that we want our brand to be based on that no matter what the bottom line is, we just want the best outcomes for people. And so when we start to shift that scarcity mindset to an abundance mindset, and we start to realize that it's not a question of lack, and is there enough and when will there be enough, it's a given that there is enough, we started to turn the table from looking at other therapists as competition, to looking at them as colleagues as collaborators in trying to get the best outcome for people in general. Whether it's our home Or whether it's someone else's client, that we're all in it together. And it really takes so much pressure off compared to having the limiting belief of scarcity and lack. Another increasingly common limiting belief that I hear more and more as more therapists are looking at the possibility of moving beyond the practice, and looking at other options and alternatives to generate revenue. I hear a lot of therapists say that to make a good income as a therapist, you need additional income streams, you're not going to get it from your practice alone, or you can't make a good income by only providing one to one services in private practice. I personally don't believe this is true at all. I believe you can make an excellent income in private practice with one to one services. I don't believe you need to go beyond to the practice that all I believe if you choose to, and if that is what is aligned with your vision for your brand, then there are a lot of options for you beyond the practice. But I don't think that any of us need to do that. And I can point to therapists after therapists that has a very good sustainable income based on their one to one private practice services. So when we start to say this, I think we need to look at what other limiting beliefs that we've already discussed might be coming into play, whether that's scarcity, or reasons for maxing out our fee setting any number of themes that may be coming into play that make us think that one to one services can't make a good income, or somehow aren't sustainable. I hear people say that then you're stuck in the trading time for money. And I don't know that we can characterize it as being stuck if it's your passion and you're getting results for client and you're enjoying the work you do. Now, I will say for some therapists who are seeing 35 and 40 clients a week, they do feel stuck. But I know a very successful private practice therapists that are happy with their 10 to 12 clients that they see per week. They make a very sustainable income off of that, and they would not characterize themselves or their practice as being stuck in trading time for money. The other consideration here is the basic supply and demand right now there's a huge shift in moving to programs, internet based programs, whether it's digital courses memberships, online coaching online services, that's a big push right now. It's new, it's novel. It's exciting. It's convenient, however, I think at some point, and this is just my future prediction, future predictions of Brandi Matthews, but I feel like as some point is going to come full circle. And that's going to be the norm, right? We've gotten so used to the convenience to the accessibility of online services, group programs, digital courses, membership sites, and basic supply and demand is going to increase the perceived value of one to one services. Because as therapists we know that at the most basic level as humans, we are relational people, we thrive on relationships and building relationships with other people. So as there is this shift right now away from one to one services, I think eventually that comes full circle, and there is that much more value in one to one services. So if you believe that you need additional income streams to make a viable living as a therapist, you really need to examine what limiting beliefs are playing in to that and finally, the last one I want to talk about today is a limiting belief of I just don't know where to start. And this is true whether we're talking about starting your practice whether we're talking about moving beyond the practice this is true for anything new and I'll be honest with you that yes this limiting belief it there's a lot of truth to it. Yeah, of course you don't know where to start. Nobody's born knowing how to do any of this stuff. And then it can become overwhelming in this age of information. There's so much information out there you can find people telling you to do it one way and then by more people telling you to do it the exact opposite there's so much information is overwhelming is beyond the point of helpful at this point is beyond the point of helpful with the volume of information that we have available, but of course you can't know it all. None of us know it all. We're always evolving and we're always learning the Why do you feel like you need to know it all.

Why do you feel Like you need to have all of the information to even get started. And really, that comes down to a fear of failing, right. And as humans, we're going to fail, we have to accept that and not allow it to impact our self worth. Right? Just because we fail doesn't mean that we're any less of a person. Just because we fail doesn't mean that we have any less self worth. We have to be willing to put ourselves out there, do the best that we can do, get the relevant information, filter out the irrelevant stuff, and actually take a risk and try and put ourselves out there to help people. We've got to get beyond the I don't know enough about the business side. I don't know enough about the legal side marketing side, I might mess up. There's too much to understand. Yes, there is to take what you can take the basic working knowledge, build some relationships, some mentoring and just get going. So the question I want to leave you with today are what am I missing? So what limiting beliefs have you struggled to overcome? Whether it's ones we talked about today, or completely different ones that I didn't even mention? What limiting beliefs have you struggled with? Or are you struggling with? And what barriers do you face right now in your practice and in building your brand, and then are these actual barriers or the perceived barriers. And a perceived barrier is really just a limiting belief until we break it down, become aware of it, and really work to overcome it. So I would love to hear about the limiting beliefs that you've struggled to overcome or that you continue to struggle with now. And this is something that we're going to be talking about a lot more and this is something that we're going to be diving into more in our upcoming program, practice with confidence, so if you are a interested in learning more about that program, you can sign up for our waitlist to be the first to get information as it becomes available. And the link to sign up for our waitlist is in the show notes. So feel free to hop over there, get on our waitlist so you can hear all about practice with confidence and explore a little bit more about how to identify and overcome these limiting beliefs in your practice. Thanks for listening. Bye, y'all.

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