It's often easy to regard a therapist's role simply as everyday work. However, there's a great difference between what a therapist does and what a regular worker does. A therapist is privy to certain personal information about his clients, and this places him in a position of trust. Trust needs nurturing, and showing care is one way to quickly build trust and strength the therapist-client bond.
Constant communication after work hours and between sessions goes a long way to show that the therapist is concerned about the client and isn't just eager to get his paycheck.
Why maintaining contact with patients/clients is important
According to the American Psychological Association research, therapist-client alliance, resulting in a budding therapeutic relationship, is a major factor in client crisis resolution. The research suggested that it might be the major catalyst for client recovery.
The Journal of Psychotherapy Practice and Research shows that the therapist-client relationship can be advantageous to the client regarding response to treatment and satisfaction. In this study, nineteen pairs of therapist-client associations for twelve psychotherapy sessions to determine the theory's credibility.
The goal of the research was to determine the kind of therapy that would be most effective for each particular problem and the best way to administer this therapy.
The study discovered that particular techniques used didn't matter much to clients' recovery as much as therapist-client client similarity. The more common ground a therapist and his client have, the better the client responds to treatment. This similarity is founded on constant interpersonal communication and maintaining rapport. Karger shows that this is the bedrock of positive client responsiveness to treatment.
Substantially, it can be clearly deduced that communication is key in therapist-client relationships. It creates a bond between you and your client and makes them more open to talking about their problems with you and generally more positive about recovery.
This communication should go both ways, and talking to one's therapist between sessions should be the norm for clients. Emailing the therapist between sessions, calling the therapist between sessions, and texting the therapist between sessions are very effective means to do this.
For the most part, the therapist is the one to open the floor for free interaction with the client. Caring for the client is in the therapist's job description, and it is impossible to do this without communication. However, there could be questions on both sides about how much to reveal and how intrusive to be.
The client may wonder; 'Can I call my therapist between sessions?', 'Can I email my therapist between sessions?', 'Is calling my therapist outside of sessions or outside hours okay?', 'Is it okay to miss my therapist between sessions?'
On the other hand, there's a question of whether therapists can text clients outside work hours. It is crucial that this communication gap is bridged and the therapist is the right one to make the first move.
What better way to accelerate your client's recovery than by maintaining contact? In today's world, that is as easy as making a phone call, sending a text message, or an email. Software services also help you keep track of client relationships and interactions, even beyond treatment and strengthening the therapeutic relationship. Such digital services are helpful, especially if you handle more than one client at a time as a therapist. Manual data records may be tiresome to keep and may even be irregular and inaccurate.
Prioritize important tasks like:
keeping track of client interactions
scheduling calls and messages
scheduling sessions and appointments
recording recommendations and progress reports
These tasks are all part of getting involved in your client's life, which would enhance communication and accelerates recovery.
Creating professional therapist email templates
As good as your intentions are as a therapist, you cannot possibly keep up with all the communication with your patients. You may mix up responses and messages and calls or forget to do any or some of these at all.
As your practice as a therapist increases, you may notice that some responses are repetitive and can easily pass for a template. These are messages you often send to clients, no matter how peculiar their care is. These responses are often used at the very beginning while creating or starting a new therapeutic relationship. They are also used to schedule sessions or, more importantly, check in on the client and subtly get a welfare report between sessions.
While the former two are expected and even required, the latter is the perfect hook. It is an unexpected show of concern that signals to the client that you are not a therapist just doing his perfunctory duty. You didn't need to call, text, or send that email, but you did anyway. Not to schedule more sessions, but to genuinely on the client.
When you maintain contact like this with your clients, you are more likely to obtain a positive response and an increased eagerness to share and communicate and accelerate recovery. This is a win-win situation worth investing in for both the client and the therapist.
This is why it is necessary to have email templates handy for your practice to have a ready response for every client situation that you need to handle. Of course, each template should be professionally written and easy to personalize. Some of the templates you'd need as a therapist are:
They are therapist email templates that you can create to respond to consultation requests by clients. Keep your tone warm, inviting, and welcoming. This is your client's first contact with you, and you need to reassure them in those few words that they've made the right choice to start therapy.
Let them know the best time to call you. Also, free your schedule enough to accommodate multiple appointments.
These are therapist email templates crafted to schedule sessions after the consultation stage. You have spoken with your client and gone over the preliminaries by this time. Let them know that you'll keep in touch and mention your available time on your calendar to accommodate their sessions. This is also where you state your fee. Be sure to reassure them and indicate your interest in hearing their story.
Missed call templates
When you cannot reach the client via phone calls, use missed call templates. These templates go a long way to show that the therapist is concerned about the client. You can either leave this one as a voice-mail message or fire them a quick mail, whichever would get to them faster, to the best of your knowledge. Let them know that you'd appreciate them calling back and when you'd be free to take their calls. Leave several time windows for this.
Waiting list templates
You should use waiting list templates for rescheduling consultations. This is where you let your clients know that you c are currently unavailable to commit to their sessions fully. In a warm and friendly tone, you also have to tell them when you'd be freed up to handle their case, and if they can't wait, make a few suggestions of other credible therapists you know that can help them.
Build a professional therapy business with Workee
If you are working with your clients online, you need a reliable software service to manage your practice's details efficiently. Workee is one such service. With Workee, you can get started on a free trial and create a professional website.
Workee enables you to book appointments, allocate time slots for said appointments and detect and free up time on your schedule. It also automatically sets your availability and the prices and receives payment. It also connects with your social media networks to make you more visible to potential clientele.
It makes communication easier with its flexible features and video call option. Clients can also easily reach you on the website, and you do not need to go through the hassle of sending and receiving emails.
Maintaining a good relationship with your client and patient is surely not easy. However, you can master the communication templates above and learn to do it effortlessly. With more mastery, you will get more positive client feedback and referral.