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Recently on the Counselling Directory Website a counsellor had a rant about constantly getting asked for concession prices. I have to say I cringed and generally felt very uncomfortable, however I could see this ladies point of view. Honestly feeling that the subject of Cost is something that perhaps needed addressing.
Although most therapists will have concession rates and/or mates rates concession rates can often devalue the therapy process. Many people believe that counselling, life coaching, mentoring and many many therapies are expensive, however before you write off counselling as an unnecessary expense I’d like you to read this blog to understand that counselling along with all the other therapies that are avaliable are an investment in health and our future selves.
I will address the elephant in the room to explain the therapists perspective
- Counsellors and therapists do not do it for the money it is a vocation
- All therpists will have spent thousands of pounds on their training. Hoping that the they will make a differance in someones life.
- There are costs that they outlay per client, weekly, monthly, yearly which will include Rent, compulsory continual professional development, insurance and governing body fees.
- Often the price of a therapy session weather it be counselling, accupunture, an aromatherapy massage will include the cost of equipment. Often most therapists will spend time between sessions researching, attending supervisions, reading and writing notes; therefore whatever you pay also covers those costs and time inbetween sessions that they spend working solely on you.
- We pay national insurance and tax (along with, often paying an accountant)
- There is a point when most therapists are unable to offer concession rates. Because the amount of people who need/ask for it often puts a counsellor/therapist in a difficult position. Why? They have overheads that they have to pay and having too many clients paying a lower rate often means they are working at a huge loss. Yes they are part of the caring community and they are there to help believe me! However if they are unable to cover costs then they often will have to give up their therapy business.
TO BE BLUNT FOR A MOMENT!
If you were asked by your boss to reduce your hourly rate/salary by half with the same personal and professional outgoings would you be able to live at the same standard? As much as I hate to say it, asking for concessions is the same thing! (and yes maybe I am justifying but just because a price says £40 per hour doesn’t mean that is what the therpist takes home).
Counselling on average costs between £35- £45 per session, that is a lot of money, I completely understand, however what it gives you is far more than the designer bag, latest iPhone, gadget or car.
Feedback from my clients often says that Counselling has given them:
- Provides a none judgemental enviroment for you to talk through what is happening
- Personal growth
- Personal understanding
- Increased confidence and self esteem
- Healthy Relationship
- Emotional and physical health – including improved level of energy
- Emotional Stability
- That you are ‘good enough’ and do ‘matter’
- You are important to others and ave a voice and people hear what you say
- You re interesting, involved, included, valued and understood
- That you able to trust, be spontaneous, free, creative, enthusiastic, playful, and curious
- Be in touch with feelings and instincts
- Be positive about life and it’s opportunities and can handle difficult situations and/or people
- Can come to terms with past traumas
- Are able to move forward in life
- And able to meet your own needs
To me the that is priceless!
I believe Counselling is a life time investment, it is not a disposable item. Before dismissing counselling (or any other therapy that could help you), as expensive think about what you want to achieve on a personal level in the next 12months?
Be honest about what you can afford and look for therapy options within that budget! For example acupuncture can often cost £55-£65 per sessions and very rarely will it be just one appointment, however there are community clinics in various locations that are often half the cost. Along with many colleges and agencies who have students requiring case studies that involve a paying a reduced rate. On occasions therapists may also be looking for case studies for further study.