How I Saved 97% on Training Costs

donkey courtroomI’m a compulsive researcher. Or maybe “research” isn’t quite the right word. Maybe self-help, continuing education, or ongoing training. But whatever you call it, I’m studying stuff all the time. But I don’t like spending money! So I’ve researched the question: “How can you get high-quality trainings for pennies on the dollar?”

I’m going to focus on getting video trainings for almost nothing, but I’ll talk about doing the same with books and audio trainings as well. And while I’m coming at this from the point of therapy training, these tactics apply to every kind of field, whether professional, hobbyist, or self-help.

Save Money on Trainings: Get Them on Video

People like talk about being all up-to-date on their therapeutic concepts and techniques, but the therapeutic landscape isn’t really changing all that fast. This means that a slightly outdated edition of a book, video training, or audio training has most of the value of the current edition, but can be picked up for a fraction of the price. Read More...

What Does Bullying From the Psychology Board Sound Like?

People of the same trade seldom meet together, even for merriment and diversion, but the conversation ends in a conspiracy against the public.

Karen Berry
Karen Berry of the OBPE

So suppose you’re an alternative counselor operating under Oregon’s generous exemptions, meaning you don’t need to have a license. What does it sound like when the Oregon Board of Psychologist Examiners tries — illegally — to bully you into shutting down?

It sounds just like this (shared with the permission of its recipient):

Note that Karen Berry, the “Investigator” for the Board of Psychologist Examiners,  doesn’t even pretend that she’s investigating “the practice of psychology,” which is the only thing the Board is authorized to investigate. She admits that she wants a counselor to shut down a counseling practice. Read More...

Legal Update for Exempt Practitioners

25099212_sIn Oregon, the Board of Psychologist Examiners (OBPE) has long claimed a legally dubious authority over exempt practitioners. This is odd, because these exemptions are not for psychologists, but for counselors and marriage and family therapists! So the OBPE has long been poaching on other Boards’ turf.

After looking into the matter on my own, I concluded that their claim to authority was not only of questionable propriety, it’s of questionable legality.

No Authority Over Unlicensed Practitioners

But after consulting with several lawyers, it turns out I was wrong. Their authority isn’t questionable, it’s nonexistent.

The Psychology Board Knows This, Sort of

Doomed policies of the OBPE are steaming full speed ahead

The Board itself is starting to consider the possibility of changing course … eventually. At the March 20, 2015 board meeting, they announced the semi-existence of an Exempt Practitioner Workgroup, a group that has never met, whose membership has not been disclosed, and which has no deadlines. In the meantime, their unlicensed practitioner prosecutions are proceeding full speed ahead. I’m hearing from more and more of them (and if you’re one of them, feel free to get in touch.) Read More...

Reasons to Avoid Getting a License

monopolyRather to my surprise, I’ve discovered that licensing boards are taking a lot of heat recently. For example, just in the last month, there has been  a Supreme Court decision upholding an anti-trust decision against a state dental board (see this Washington Post article). And across the country, there’s an increasing outcry against treating doctors as criminals for minor or nonexistent offenses — especially because, when doctors lose their licenses, their more fragile patients often commit suicide. You’d think that a medical board, consisting mostly of doctors, would consider what’s truly best for the patients, but this doesn’t seem to be the case.

My experience with licensing boards is that they have difficulty attracting the best and the brightest — most of a board’s tasks are tedious and unrewarding — and even when they do, the board members are not trained judges or lawyers. Nor does the system provide adequate backup to compensate for this. A doctor brought in front of a medical board, and at risk of losing his license, has fewer legal protections than he would for a simple speeding ticket! Read More...

Gregory Bateson and Choosing Your Assumptions Wisely

gregory_bateson_steps_to_an_ecology_of_mindSo I’ve been surveying brief therapy techniques and advanced modalities, and what do I find? Most of them seem to have a direct connection with one man, Gregory Bateson: brief therapy, hypnotherapy, NLP,  Hakomi, sensorimotor psychotherapy, family therapy, and many more.

Wait, what? Gregory Bateson wasn’t a therapist, he was an anthropologist. He studied cultures in New Guinea. (He was married to Margaret Mead, another famous anthropologist.) But maybe that’s the point. Big changes tend to be started  by outsiders who bring a new perspective. Typically they’re from a related field. Freud wasn’t a psychiatrist: he was a neurologist. Louis Pasteur wasn’t a physician: he was a chemist.

Being an anthropologist gets you out of the office and into the field, watching people interact with each other in ways that seem weird to you but (mostly) work for them. You can’t understand it you never see it! Read More...