Writing to build your counselling/psychotherapy practice

52 Themes for Counsellors and Psychotherapists to write about in their local paper

This list began with a conversation between two therapists. They wanted to build their local practices, and had decided that they wanted to find a way of getting people to come to see them. They’d tried all kinds of leaflet drops – doctors’ surgeries, hairdressers, florists, funeral directors, coffee-shops and so on.

They decided to try to get a regular column in a local newspaper. Having created a list of topics, similar to this one, they scoured the local papers (including the freebies) until they found a couple that looked good possibilities. They wrote up a half dozen themes into short 250-word articles which appeared to be the size of a typical ‘column’ in the papers concerned, and sent them to one of the editors asking for feedback. Within a month the first appeared. It took another couple of months for the trickle of clients to build up. On occasions after publication, they had follow up calls from the local radio stations and appeared on those briefly too.

Unfortunately, it didn’t take long for their creativity to dry up and instead of a regular column they ended up sending ad hoc articles instead. Fortunately, by then they had a steady enough stream of ongoing referrals.

1 New Year Resolutions
2 Why birth can be so painful
3 On death and dying
4 Why grief is necessary
5 When the children go to school
6 Giving up
7 Being yourself
8 Why marriages fail and how to stop them
9 How to find a good therapist
10 Churchill’s black dog
11 Whose anger is it anyway?
12 When all your choices seem to go wrong
13 Learning from our own life
14 How talking cures work
15 Feeling deserted
16 When the children leave home
17 Mid-life crises
18 Too much anxiety
19 Why suicide?
20 Getting your bloke to love you
21 There is always a choice
22 Growing old is never easy
23 Do you cry a lot?
24 Helping your child tackle bullies
25 What’s this thing called love?
26 The outsider looking in
27 Surviving childhood abuse
28 Building confidence
29 Feeling proud of yourself
30 When Christmas loses its cheer
31 Tackling money worries
32 Falling out of love
33 It was never meant to be like this
34 The human need for meaning
35 Hate is a powerful word
36 No place to hide
37 Why some people are just plain spiteful
38 How fear can grip you
39 How to cope when things go wrong
40 How to cope when you lose control
41 Breaking up is never easy
42 Dealing with addiction
43 Listening skills for parents
44 Putting something behind you
45 Finding meaning in life
46 Building a social circle
47 An unnatural fear of intimacy
48 Sexual healing
49 Patterns from the past
50 What has pain got to do with it?
51 Now you’ve tried pulling yourself together
52 When you don’t look the way you want to

If you want to discuss this approach, explore other ways of building your professional practice, or get the kind of support that you really want from a supervisor, then do get in touch.

Best wishes

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