Clinical psychologist works in hospitals, private practice and in academic settings to help others and treat mental disorders and how to prevent them. Clinical psychologist can work with clients directly or as a researcher they do scientific research on many disorders and problems. So to be able to effectively work as a clinical psychologist one must have some important characteristics that will help him do his work and deal effectively with the clients and help them.
A clinical psychologist should be a good listener, because when the client is describing his problem if the psychologist does not listen to it carefully he can miss anything important that can be helpful afterwards. Listening is also associated with attention, the psychologist should always give full attention to the client because if the thought comes into the client’s head that the psychologist is not totally focused on listening to what he has to say he may become disappointed or will not cooperate with you.
A good Observer
Observation is a key ingredient in every scientific method and it is also the best way to gain information about anything. A good clinical psychologist does not have his full attention towards just what the client is saying but he is also a deep observer of the behavior of the client, the tone of his voice, eye contact, hands, shyness etc. these little observation can give brief information about what the client is really feeling inside.
Patience is a quality that is very necessary for a clinical psychologist, the reason is that the client with mental disorders are very explicit sometimes in showing their views and they can sometimes say some mean or indecent things to the psychologist at that time the psychologist should be patience and remain calm. Especially in the case of psychotic disorders and intellectual disability the client may touch the psychologist or show some indecent movements that might be upsetting to the psychologist but he should remain calm because he knows well that these people are not doing it on purpose they have a problem and he is there to help them not to get angry on them.
A good clinical psychologist has a composed and balanced personality. By composed it means that he should not get carried away with emotions. If client say something funny and psychologist will start laughing harder than the client and if he say something sorrowful and the psychologist will start to cry then he won’t be able to perform his duties so well.
Sense of humor
Sense of humor is also essential for becoming a effective clinical psychologist. A psychologist should be able to understand if client say something funny and smile on that, and he should have the quality to lift up the spirit of the client by making him smile.
This is so important; a clinical psychologist should never judge his clients on the basis of what they are telling him about the problems they have. If a psychologist will start confronting the clients with something bad they did and start to judge them based on their actions and thoughts they will hesitate to talk about their feelings and thoughts to the psychologist. A psychologist should always believe that the client is also a human being and it is the act which is bad or good but not the person itself.
If someone does not have confidence on himself then how can he solve the anxiety or self esteem issues of someone else? I don’t think so. If a psychologist is not confident he will keep circling around the doubts he has in his mind and it is very bad for the client. A clinical psychologist’s mind should be clear and he should be confidence that he can help the client and try his best to do it.
You must be thinking that what does general knowledge has to do with becoming an effective clinical psychologist. The thing is that clinical psychologist has to build up a good relationship with the client and have good rapport with the client. To build this rapport he should be able to understand the feelings and thoughts of the client. Now there can be a client who is in the field of physics and he is talking to the clinical psychologist and he is talking about the great achievement of physicist and trying him that how we discovered the Higgs boson the fundamental particle of the matter or talking about the machines and theories. If the psychologist does not have the basic and latest knowledge about these things he have no idea what his client his talking about and can interfere in the way of building a good rapport with the client. The client can also have doubts about the psychologist thinking that he does not even know this. He also have to clearly understand the situation his client is in. It’s not like psychologist should be perfect in everything; it’s just that he should have a basic knowledge of all the profession that he may encounter.
Competency and determination
A clinical psychologist should be skilled and competent. He should have command over the treatments and diagnosis of the disorders and also have experience in the field. A clinical psychologist should never give up on his clients. If a client is not showing any changes in behavior or not responding to the treatment or his diagnosis is hard to complete then clinical psychologist should not lose hope and try every possible way to treat and help the client. A clinical psychologist should take all its energy and focus it on the client.
A clinical psychologist should always have a scientific mind because it will help him to objectively do the treatment of the client. He should also be able to pick up the patterns or be able to see the links and similarities in some of his client’s behaviors and conditions. He should think rationally and don’t allow his emotions or personal feelings affects his judgment.
A clinical psychologist should be a caring and living person.
He should never taunt his clients.
He should be friendly and empathetic.
He should be a sensitive person when it comes to understand the feelings of his clients.
Feel free to tell us in the comments what qualities and characteristics you think a clinical psychologist should have.