My wife had reached a point of stagnation in her work, and did not know what direction to move in. A friend recommended her a psychologist, with whom that friend had been working for a long time. I supported this. Generally, I believe that good psychologists can be very beneficial, while family members cannot take the place of psychologists, since their advice is often biased.
The psychologist was 20 minutes late for the first Skype session, for which she did not apologize, but fair enough, she is obviously a busy person. The impression my wife got from the first session was inconclusive. I recommended a second session, because for any consultant the first session is only a sort of fire for adjustment; he/she spends that time getting a grasp of the client’s request. My wife agreed and wrote a message to the psychologist, requesting a second session.
The answer came. The time of the second session was scheduled. The psychologist’s message was strikingly short; there was neither a “Good afternoon”, nor my wife’s name in it.
My wife said that the impersonal and impolite nature of the message annoyed her and looked at me. I said that I understood her feelings, but that this was most likely a misunderstanding. I suggested that she write back about her feelings in the proper form. Which she did.
The answer came quickly. The psychologist refused to work with her. This time, however, she called my wife by her name and even wished her a good day.
My wife looked at me again. I said that she had been very lucky. Such a psychologist would not only be unable to solve any problems, but would very probably create new ones. It would simply be dangerous to open one’s mind to her, let alone one’s soul. It’s a good thing that this had become apparent so quickly.
This is not the first time that I’ve encountered such an attitude – which is most often present in psychologists and psychics (I have some experience of communicating with a couple of psychics). How is it that people whose profession it is to heal the souls of other people show such a lack of understanding of the basic principles of relationships and business?
There is a good book by Mikhail Bulgakov called “Heart of a Dog”. In it, a Russian intellectual of the old school, professor Preobrazhensky, turns a dog named Sharik into a man and gives him the surname Sharikov. But Sharikov quickly comes out from under the professor’s influence and displays all the qualities characteristic of a low level of consciousness – rudeness, aggressiveness and cowardice; he quickly finds himself a teacher called Shvonder, who is very similar to Sharikov, although Shvonder himself was originally a man (and not a dog).
Behind all these manifestations lies a huge inferiority complex. I believe that all too often people who want (subconsciously) to rid themselves of this complex and achieve success in life choose to become psychologists. But alas, in the universities they attend they are taught by that same kind of psychologists with that same complex. Shvonders teach Sharikovs. It is a vicious cycle.
Professional knowledge is not the only thing that is important in a psychologist (psychotherapist). What is also important is the integrity and sincerity of their intent. Which is fundamentally impossible to have for a psychologist with low self-esteem. Such a psychologist will always undermine the self-esteem of his/her clients as soon as they reach their first successes. Otherwise, how would he/she be able to demonstrate his/her superiority?
Fortunately, there are also good psychologists, but they are few. So, my recommendations remain valid – a psychologist (trainer) can bring many benefits. But care must be taken when selecting one. Good luck!