The harsh reality is that most therapy practices fail because the therapist owner does not make enough income to keep them going.
Why is it so hard for therapists to make a sustainable income from their work? In my opinion it is because the average rates for therapy sessions fall well beneath the rate that needs to be charged if the therapist is to make a living.
You might be wondering why I am saying this? Well, I was a psychotherapist for over 10 years and even though I was fully booked pretty much all of the time, I still couldn’t afford to take holidays, put money towards a pension or drive a car that wasn’t 8 years old…
So I guess you could say I have insider experience of the challenges facing therapists who want their therapy practice to be their full time occupation and sole source of income.
If you think this situation just affects full time therapists you would be wrong…it is just as problematic for therapists who are doing their therapy work part time and desperately want to change across to working full time as a therapist because it means that they are unable to afford to let go of their main job and switch across.
If you compare the income therapists make to the income other health professionals make, then you can see that the average therapist’s income trails way behind.
Can you relate to what I am writing??
The other major problem that therapists have is that the traditional business model (they are taught to adopt by their training institutions) is probably the worst business model that could possibly be adopted for a business!
If you are unsure what I mean by business model what I’m talking about when I mention traditional therapy practice business model is the approach that clients come for treatment and pay on a session by session basis.
Can you imagine a worse business model than one where a client comes for one session and pays for that single session?
I mean let’s get real, what you charge for that session is likely to be on average around £30 or €40, when you add up your expenses, such as room rent, mobile phone, professional indemnity insurance, CPD and everything else, what do you take home? Probably around £10 or €15.
Read also: 5 reasons to take your therapy business online
What’s more, given clients could be coming for just one or a few sessions, you’ve got to find masses of clients to actually fill all your spaces continuously (okay so Counsellors have a slightly easier time as clients often stay for more than one session but in reality a lot of counselling clients stop after 6 sessions).
On top of all of these problems there is also the fact that most therapists work face to face with clients, which means that most of their clients come from the local community. As we know the numbers of therapists are burgeoning and this means that there are increasing numbers of therapists all fishing for the same clients. Simply making it harder to attract clients and more likely that clients will compare prices and look for the cheapest options.
Even if you do overcome all these problems and manage to build a practice that is fully booked with clients, you still have the problem that you have to work super hard to make sufficient income and yes as you might imagine I’ve seen so many therapists burn out on this path (myself included!).
When I hit my income ceiling and realized I couldn’t work any harder to make the income I craved, I felt totally demoralized and disheartened. I’d worked so hard to build up my therapy practice and was so passionate about my work with clients but was making less than I did as a legal secretary when I was 21 years old.
Then it got me thinking that there must be another way…
…And there is!
The solution is to take your therapy business online – I’ll explain exactly why this is THE BEST WAY to double your income whilst halving the number of clients you need to work with and have the flexibility you crave in my next post so keep an eye out for that..
Read also: How to attract 10 clients in 60 days