Do you struggle to believe you can charge more than $100 per session?
Do you currently have money problems with your practice due to undervaluing your services and taking on too many clients at too low of a price?
Well, if the answer is yes, you’re not alone.
Here are 5 reasons why:
1. Insurance Companies Undervalue Mental Health
Historically, insurance companies have underpriced our services. Although going to the dentist is priced at $400-$700 per visit, many times therapists will only get about $80 for an HOUR long appointment. As you know, you’ve spent years in school and countless hours to be where you are now. You are highly trained and skilled, yet the pricing of your services by insurance companies doesn’t always reflect this.
Awareness surrounding the true value of mental health is becoming more prevalent, but chances are insurance companies will take longer to catch up. Don’t let their prices define how much you charge for your services.
2. You’re Too Nice
Let’s face it, your job is to help people with their problems. Others may describe you as “the good guy or gal” and more often than not, it seems fitting. You don’t want to burden your clients with financial stress on top of their other stressors, and you just want everyone to be ok–what’s wrong with that??
Although your desire to take care of others is admirable and a gift to society, you not taking care of yourself, well, isn’t.
When you’re not charging what you need to in order to live well, reach your goals, or save for retirement, you’re not really doing anyone a favor in the long run. Too often, the reality is therapists are over-worked and under-paid.
The good news is, this doesn’t have to be you! You can be an extremely effective clinician AND provide for yourself and your family well. In fact, we would argue, these have to go hand-in-hand for you to make your career a sustainable one.
3. You’re Afraid to Succeed
Many times therapists have an underlying fear of making a lot of money. Depending on what you learned about money growing up (and what having a lot of money meant about you) will determine how far you allow yourself to go in terms of reaching your financial goals.
Self-sabotage can occur when we’re afraid of who we may become, or what others might think of us if we attain wealth.
Ask yourself: When you think of financial success, does it mean you’re a “bad” person? Does it mean you’re too focused on the wrong things? Does it mean you’re materialistic?
Taking the time to unpack your “money story” is going to help you start to deconstruct some unhelpful beliefs you may be unconsciously holding about money. Once you’re aware of these, you’ll have the power to change the ones you don’t actually agree with, unlocking your potential to reach your financial goals and have a practice you feel good about.
4. You’re Giving Into “Money-Shame Culture”
As therapists for many of the reasons listed above, we tend to shame one another for charging more than “what seems fit” (aka what you’ve seen charged for a session.)
Facebook groups, email lists, and general chats are full of therapists trying to get a gauge on what’s “acceptable” to charge for your services. Although these groups are great for things like referrals and other community-building resources, we would advise you to stay away from the “how much should I charge” convos.
What you charge has to be based on what YOUR financial goals are, and a myriad of other factors that will most likely not look the same as other people’s. Wondering how to figure out what your session fee should be? Watch this video where we walk you through exactly how to calculate this!
5. You’re Not Raising Your Fees
Once you’ve set your fee after watching our video above, you may be thinking “Phew! I’m glad that’s over”. Well, not quite.
Inflation is a real thing and so is the inevitable growth of your skillset. Over time, you’re developing more expertise and therefore need to be charging more. In general, you need to be raising your fees TWICE per year. We know what you’re thinking: “I’m going to lose all of my clients!”
In our experience, clients RARELY leave once you’ve upped the price per session. Just create a nice letter that explains you will be raising your session fee and explain how if they have any issues you can discuss this together. Send it out, and you’re done!
We hope this was helpful in uncovering some reasons why you may be having money problems as a therapist.
Check out our new video where John explains this in more detail below:
Want to learn more about how you can create a practice you love without all the overwhelm? Click below to get started today!Get Started Now!