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April 1st – One Year in Private Practice!

Posted on: Saturday, March 28th, 2009

I can remember the challenge – “will I do this?” And little did I know at the time how complicated, challenging and stress-producing it would be! But looking back now, I can better describe the process as an adventure, one that has become more exciting and rewarding with each passing month. Some highlights:

Choosing the name – Many were the choices from the very professional Charles Coleman Counselling Services to Help is on the Way Services! But then I asked myself – how do I view people’s lives and my role as a counsellor in helping them? My belief has always been that our lives are a journey and our difficulties mere bumps on that road. Seeing people’s lives this way allows me to give them credit for getting this far, for being courageous to ask for help and seeing myself as a temporary participant in their bigger story. 

Finding the space – divine providence is all I can say! I had been looking for three months and was checking out an office space for lease at the Campana Place when I decided to ask some of the other counsellors there what their experience was like working in Kensington. The second counsellor I walked in on mentioned matter-of-factly that they had an office available and had been looking for someone for a while!

Building a client base – Probably one of the biggest challenges in starting a business is getting clients to know about you and come to see you! The start was indeed slow – 4 clients in the first month and 2 only came once! But with some determination and lots of advice I decided to sub-contract from a bigger firm and started getting a steady stream of clients by mid-May. I have enjoyed working with everyone that has walked through my doors and have learned so much from my clients with their variety of challenges and multitudes of perspectives and solutions. 

The Business aspect – this has been my favorite! Marketing, putting decals on my red landrover, maintaining contact with referring doctors, and knowing that my efforts translate directly to whether or not I can pay the monthly rent! Maybe its the suspence, maybe the rush comes from having to build something. What I do know is that I would do it again! I look forward to seeing Journey Counselling grow this year and in the many to come to becoming a premier counselling centre with support for people of every ethnicity, background and challenge in life!

Celebrate with me!

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