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The Gift Of Resentment

An interesting theme emerged in my private practice consultation group last week. It may seem like an odd theme for a business group –  resentment. As I shared a few of my own experiences in private practice it became very clear that I had used my feelings of resentment as a guide to lead me to my ideal private practice.

I view resentment as an amazing gift to let me know when I need to make a change or to set better boundaries. Here are a few examples that I share:

  • After being in a group practice for a short time, I realized that I resented the inefficiency of how decisions were made in the group. So, I decided to go out on my own.
  • After having my third child and moving to a new area years ago, I remember feeling increasingly resentful of my commute to my therapy office. That prompted me to move to an office closer to my new home.
  • After I realized that I resented spending more time doing paperwork and making phone calls trying to get reimbursed from managed care companies than I was spending actually doing therapy, I started resigning from all panels.
  • When I started resenting seeing clients after 5:00p.m. I stopped seeing clients in the evenings.

So, my fellow private practitioners, what are you resenting in your practice?

How can you use resentment as a gift to make needed changes and bring you closer to your your ideal practice?  



About Dr. Julie Hanks, LCSW:
Dynamic self & relationship expert Dr. Julie de Azevedo Hanks, LCSW loves to make a difference for women. She owns Wasatch Family Therapy and regularly contributes to TV Shows and her advice has been featured nationally including Wall Street Journal, Parenting, Fox News, and others. Connect on Instagram, Facebook & Twitter. Her books The Burnout Cure and The Assertiveness Guide are now available. Dr. Hanks is currently accepting coaching clients.



This might sound strange, but I actually resent the “group” experience of therapy at times and the experience of “blending in.” So I have taken time to figure out ways to individualize group settings. I now foster relationships with each individual group member, address individual group members by their name, and try to member small facts about them. This not only makes the client feel respected, but also paid attention to and understood. One of the things I resent about group therapy is that everyone blends in and in some groups the therapist remains detached from individual members, especially when a group is more than 15 members or the group includes children and adolescents. In Community Centers, groups are often CBT and directive, which makes it difficult to foster individual connections. My resentment for this “blending together” of personalities, experiences, and cultures has motivated me to consider alternative ways of individualizing group therapy without compromising the group experience itself.

James Pidel

I am very glad you are not my therapist.

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