Day in the life of
Licensed Clinical Psychologist – Dr. Bruce L. Thiessen
I am a licensed clinical psychologist, presently practicing in a San Diego-based community health center.
My typical day involves doing mental health screenings, administering psychological assessments, and providing psychotherapy to a wide diversity of mental health patients (whom I prefer to regard as mental health athletes.
My day is never typical because I never know whether I will be managing a mental health crisis; helping a patient to maintain stability; or encounter an atypical mental health issue, that does not fit neatly into any particular diagnostic category.
In addition to doing typical psychologist things, as a singer/songwriter, and a mental health provider that has previously worked as a music therapist, I continuously seek out ways of intervening to alleviate mental health suffering through the avenue of music. That could involve helping musically-inclined patients use their musical skills as a way of exploring unresolved issues and as an avenue of self-expression and catharsis (letting out all that is bottled up inside).
For those patients that love music, but lack the interest and skills to express themselves directly through music, intervention via music could involve helping patients create musical playlists consisting of songs they find to meaningfully address their issues and songs they find therapeutic.
The biggest pro is the opportunity to play an active role in alleviating human suffering, and to enhance the quality of life for my patients, by guiding them to discover the vast array of internal and external resources that offer a path to healing.
The biggest con is that, if I don’t take care of myself, and if I take too much responsibility for the mental health of my patients, is that I could end up with burnout, and then, not only will my own mental health suffer, but I could become considerably less effective in working with individuals on my caseload.
diagnose or evaluate mental and emotional disorders of individuals through observation, interview, and psychological tests, and formulate and administer programs of treatment.