Why I Chose Health Psychology Instead of Clinical!

Hello and WELCOMEto PsychAssist! Recently we have been asked on many occasions as to why I decided to pursue the Health Psychology Doctorate instead of the Clinical Doctorate. This was a very unexpected decision on my part, however, something that has completely opened my eyes to a whole new world. This is why I wanted to share the reasons why I chose the road less travelled.


Just Graduated? Check out: 6 Jobs for A Psychology Graduate straight out of university?


Thinking About Applying For The Clinical Doctorate? Check out: Everything You Need To Know About The Clinical Doctorate Application


Thinking About Health Psychology? Check out: How Health Psychology Should Dominate Instagram Culture


Missed The Last PsychAssist Article? Check out: Life Of A Psychology Graduate: Serkan’s Story

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I Enjoy It

Ok so first and foremost, the main reason I chose the Health Psychology Doctorate was because I thoroughly enjoyed my MSc Health Psychology Course. I like to view Health Psychology as that grey area between Physical Health and Mental Health as we, to a certain degree explore both sides. This was the thing that really intrigued me when I was looking for an MSc. It was completely different to anything I had learned at Undergraduate and certainly not what was the “norm” in a career in Psychology. My dad once told me “Love what you do, so Do what you love”. I was reminded of this when I asked him for advice on which MSc to pursue.


PsychAssist Tip: We always get asked by Psychology Graduates about what they should do next in their pursuit of a Psychology Doctorate. Almost all the time, we respond with, what do you enjoy doing? What area of Psychology are you most passionate about? Pursue that area even if you don’t think there’s a future in it as you’d rather do something that you enjoy than something that pays better!



“for many, this would be a deterrence but I see it as endless possibilities”

        PsychAssist (2018)


Health Is The Future

Now we previously wrote an article on what psychology will look like in 2030, we discussed how Health psychology will be a major powerhouse in the world of psychology. I’m a big fan of things making sense and Health Psychology just makes sense with how the world is these days. More and more people are becoming interested in their own health and how they can improve their overall health. It’s funny to think that 15 years ago, people would laugh at people who go to the gym and eat clean whereas it’s the norm nowadays. This is where Health Psychology comes in as with this mentality shift, someone needs to explore the “Mental” aspects of how people can change their behaviour.


PsychAssist Tip: Health Psychology is still very young in comparison to other psychological disciplines. For many people, this would deter them from pursuing this career path, however, I see it as endless possibilities. There’s no set path with Health Psychology which means that many Health Psychologists work in very varied fields and are very flexible. This is exactly what I wanted.



“99% of the time you’ll end up in something completely different”

       PsychAssist (2018)



The Path is Rarely Straight

Many Psychology Graduates feel like they need to go for certain jobs as that’s the path they think they should be on. This obviously causes issues when their expectations don’t match reality. This was the same situation I was in as I had my heart set on pursuing Clinical Psychology as I thought that was what I was SUPPOSED to do and the only option to feel “successful”.This tunnel vision that many graduates have is so dangerous and really hinders your progression in both works and in life. However, the funny thing is, 99% of the time you’ll end up in something completely different to where you think you would end up. Upon reflection, I am so happy about where I ended up as I know that I am pursuing something that I truly love and enjoy!


PsychAssist Tip: Stop stressing about getting to the destination as the growth is in the journey! I always say, “What will be will be” and I can’t stress this enough! The amount of people in life that go with the flow and find themselves in a position that they would never have dreamed of is astonishing! Next time you start to stress about not progressing in life, just remember that you are running your own race so don’t worry what anyone else is doing.  



Tune in next time for more great articles!


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