Personal Psychotherapy and Supervision
Many psychotherapists engage in their own personal therapy. I certainly have, on more than one occasion, and it has been extremely helpful to me. Without that experience, I could not have the confidence in psychotherapy that I have. I know it to be deeply useful, with the sort of conviction that only comes from personal experience. In the process of my own treatment I have also learned a lot about my own personality, including my own inner conflicts and emotional injuries and blind-spots. This has helped me to be more objective and perceptive when working with clients.
It has also been very helpful to me to have regular peer-supervision with colleagues whose wisdom and integrity I trust. I meet weekly with two small groups of colleagues for discussion of clinical issues, and have done this for many years. Until I sat down to write this, I had never reflected on the fact that their numbers include several nationally-recognized leaders in individual therapy, group therapy, family therapy, psychiatric medications, and marital communication. And all of the members are highly regarded in the community. I might wonder what I am doing there! In any case, their ongoing counsel helps my work immeasurably.