For years I have heard many graduates say “you need to get an Assistant Psychologist role” and always view these posts as the be all and end all. I have been an Assistant Psychologist for years and granted it has been very rewarding and amazing at times. Nevertheless, no job is perfect so I thought I would write a post about the Worst Things about being an Assistant Psychologist that may help inform your decision when applying for these roles.
Don’t know what an Assistant Psychologist does? Check out So What do Assistant Psychologists Actually Do?
Don’t know if you’re suited to being an Assistant Psychologist? Check out the 7 Commonalities of All Assistant Psychologists
Are you on the right path as a Psychology Graduate? Check out the Timeline of a Psychology Graduate
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Qualified yet Not Qualified
This has to be the worst part of being an Assistant Psychologist. In all honesty, no other disciplines actually know what an Assistant Psychologist does so majority will do one of two things. They will either disregard you as someone who cannot do much and therefore not that helpful. Secondly (which is the worst of the two), they will expect you to carry out the same responsibilities as your supervisor which you obviously aren’t able to do. This is a real issue amongst Assistants as some feel they need to step up and take on those responsibilities which often end badly.
Top Tip: Speak with your supervisor and also with the other non-psychology professionals and explain to them what your role entails and the limitations of your role. There no shame in saying you cant do something, or its not in your role.
Every Assistant has experienced the pressures of raised expectations. Every September, I’m bombarded with questions from Qualified Psychologist of “Are you applying for the course this year”. This, for many, is very anxiety provoking as once February/March comes around and you haven’t been shortlisted for interviews, it becomes very disheartening. Not to mention that everyone is reinforcing this by asking you how you got on.
Top Tip: Every Doctorate course is very competitive so it’s good to bear this in mind. Speak with other Assistant Psychologists about this and how normal this feeling is amongst psychology graduates. YOUR TIME WILL COME!!
This is another MASSIVE issue amongst Assistant Psychologists. Not only do Qualified Psychologists expecting the world from you, you also have other Psychology Graduates who think you’re a cut above the rest. I’ll let you in on a secret…..WHERE JUST LIKE YOU!! We have no idea what we’re doing and majority of us are winging it until were told otherwise. I know this from experience that eventually you learn to piece together little bits of accumulated knowledge you’ve gained over the years and somehow know when to use that information.
Top Tip: Know your limitations and embrace them. I know from experience how bad things can get when you think you know it all! Ask for help from your team and don’t be scared to look stupid. I’ve said in previous posts that I start many sentences at work with the phrase “this may be a stupid question but”, I acknowledge that feeling and people respond positively to that by giving a helping hand.
Thank you for reading this week’s post by PsychAssist
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