Profitable Private Practice

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In ACT on Your Business, therapist and business coach Lee Chaix McDonough will introduce you to the six keys to unlocking greater fulfillment, success, and joy. Using her evidence-based methodology for entrepreneurial flexibility, she’ll teach you the tools you need to get in touch with what’s most important to you (and why that’s the key to sound decision-making), to transform your deepest, darkest thoughts and feelings from enemies to allies, and to anchor yourself in the midst of any storm.

The result? You confidently move forward with decisions knowing that they’re aligned with what matters most. (No self-doubt spiral required.) You show up powerfully in your business and your life. And you actually start enjoying your business, because you’re reconnected to your initial spark.

You can learn more about ACT on Your Business and read our full review HERE.


How We Built Our Dream Practice: Innovative Ideas for Building Yours by Dave Verhaagen PhD and Frank Gaskill PhD.

Dave Verhaagen and Frank Gaskill and their colleagues at SoutheastPsych in Charlotte have built a creative and successful clinical practice that could be the envy of any private practitioner. Influenced by their core values of FIRE (Fun, Innovation, Relationship, and Excellence) the authors describe their experiences of creating a group practice of more than 30 clinicians, all with full clinical caseloads, working completely outside of managed care. Written in a reader-friendly and personal style, the authors provide a perspective and framework that you can adapt to create your own unique dream practice. Unified and strengthened by a clear mission, values, and culture, SoutheastPsych has flourished much more than Verhaagen and Gaskill had ever dreamed. They hope that How We Built Our Dream Practice: Innovative Ideas for Building Yours will do the same for you.


private practice be a wealthy therapist

Be a Wealthy Therapist: Finally, You Can Make A Living Making A Difference by Casey Truffo

You are called to be a therapist. Are you also called to poverty? Be a Wealthy Therapist is not about being greedy or about selling yourself – it s about being the therapist you were meant to be while earning a good and honest living doing so. You worked hard to get here. You deserve to be paid well for what you do. In fact the definition Wealthy Therapist is one who wakes up at least 6 days out of 7, happy to be doing this important work with fabulous clients he or she adores (and being paid well for it.). You worked hard to get here. You deserve to paid well for all that you do. Read this book and join with other therapists who declare: No longer is it okay to have managed care be in charge of our practices. No longer will we volunteer to be among the lowest paid health care professionals.



private practice financial savvy for therapists

Financial Savvy for Therapists: How to Manage Your Money to Build Your Business by Alexa S. Elkington 

For many therapists, money matters are uncomfortably confusing. Burdened with questions about how to set fees, track income and outgo, handle billings, insurance and much more, therapists throw up their hands and ignore the business part of their practice. Financial Savvy for Therapists: How to Manage Your Money to Build Your Business addresses this reluctance.

The author explains in a clear, easy-to understand manner how to handle virtually all money-related activities. She explores with readers how their personal money attitudes and beliefs might throw up roadblocks for them as they attempt to move forward on the road to business success. The author then addresses issues of specific concern to therapists, including how to set fees and how to ask for payment, as well as when and how to raise fees. From all of this readers will learn how becoming financially savvy will open the door to creating a more successful business.

twelve months to your ideal private practice

Twelve Months To Your Ideal Private Practice: A Workbook by Lynn Grodzki

Many therapists suffer from a psychic split about their work in private practice: they loved being therapists, but hate being in business.

This book, based in part on Lynn Grodzki’s book Building Your Ideal Private Practice, is a year-long, progressive practice-building program offering therapists an abundance of information, ideas, and strategies for working successfully in private practice. Whereas Building Your Ideal Private Practice was a comprehensive guide to practice building, this workbook is a month-by-month coaching program, giving readers the experience of being coached for a year.


Marketing for the Mental Health Professional: An Innovative Guide for Practitioners by David P. Dianna

A practical guide for professionals looking to achieve long-term success in the field, Marketing for the Mental Health Professional proposes a different way of thinking about the profession. It leverages and incorporates key business, sales, and marketing principles that “best in class” organizations and sales/marketing professionals use to generate an increase in market share, financial wealth, and overall achievement.




The E-Myth Revisited: Why Most Small Businesses Don’t Work and What to Do About It by Michael E. Gerber

In this first new and totally revised edition of the 150,000-copy underground bestseller, The E-Myth, Michael Gerber dispels the myths surrounding starting your own business and shows how commonplace assumptions can get in the way of running a business. He walks you through the steps in the life of a business from entrepreneurial infancy, through adolescent growing pains, to the mature entrepreneurial perspective, the guiding light of all businesses that succeed. He then shows how to apply the lessons of franchising to any business whether or not it is a franchise. Finally, Gerber draws the vital, often overlooked distinction between working on your business and working in your business. After you have read The E-Myth Revisited, you will truly be able to grow your business in a predictable and productive way.


private practice

Book Yourself Solid: The Fastest, Easiest, and Most Reliable System for Getting More Clients Than You Can Handle Even if You Hate Marketing and Selling by Michael Port

Book Yourself Solid, Second Edition reveals why self-promotion is a critical factor to success, giving you a unique perspective that makes this guide much more than an ordinary “how to” manual for getting more clients and raising a business profile.

Book Yourself Solid, Second Edition enables you to adopt the right promotional perspective and provides the strategies, techniques, and skills necessary to get more clients and increase profits. Through verbal and written exercises, you’ll discover the keys to developing a strong marketing plan and brand image.



private practice field guide

The Private Practice Field Guide: How to build your authentic and successful counseling practice by Daniel A. Franz

When I started thinking about making the leap from working for someone else to owning my own mental health private practice several years ago, I was terrified. I was worried I would never make enough money, afraid to give up the “security” of a “stable” income, and anxious at the thought of having to find my own clients and convince them that I was the therapist for them. I needed a guide – a nuts and bolts “How To” manual to give me the step-by-step path from where I was to where I wanted to be. Unfortunately, I couldn’t find one. Don’t get me wrong, I found tons of information, and a few really great books that told me I could do, that they had faith in me, and to think positive. But I needed more. I wasn’t able to find everything I needed to get started in one convenient, handy-dandy location, so I struggled to pick it up along the way. I made plenty of mistakes, some fairly expensive, some pretty embarrassing. That’s why I wrote this book. To help you avoid all that and to have an easier time along your journey from where you are to where you want to be. Are you ready to leave your current position as employee-therapist and start your own practice? Have you been thinking about leaving the “safety” and “security” of corporate community mental health to strike out on your own, but can’t get past the fear, anxiety, and stress of making the move? Do you want to take the practice you currently have and increase your caseload through more effective marketing? Is it time to take a good honest look at our business practices and streamline them in order to give yourself more time and income? If you answered “YES!” to any of these questions, I wrote this book for you.

The Paper Office for the Digital Age: Forms, Guidelines, and Resources to Make Your Practice Work Ethically, Legally, and Profitably by Edward L. Zuckerman PhD and Keely Kolmes PsyD

Significantly revised and updated to include online and computerized aspects of private practice, this essential manual has given many tens of thousands of clinicians the complete record-keeping and risk-reduction tools that every psychotherapy practice needs. The book provides effective methods for obtaining informed consent, planning treatment and documenting progress, managing HIPAA compliance, maintaining clinical and financial records, communicating with clients and third-party payers, and reducing malpractice risk. Drawing from the professional literature, it features key guidance and easy-to-digest pointers about the ethical, legal, and business aspects of practice. With a large-size format and lay-flat binding for easy photocopying of the 53 reproducible forms and handouts, the book includes a CD-ROM that lets purchasers customize and print the reproducible materials.

building your ideal private practice

Building Your Ideal Private Practice: A Guide for Therapists and Other Healing Professionals by Lynn Grodzki

For those already in practice, worried about profitability in an age of increasing competition, the author offers informed strategies such as the best way to create websites and other online marketing to find clients, and then goes further to explain how to retain the new breed of fickle clients who shop for therapists online, but are hard to satisfy. Other new chapters support veteran therapists edging towards retirement, including how to sell a therapy business for a profit or whether to stay working solo or expand into a more lucrative group business model.




If you’re building a private practice, make sure you check out the Selling the Couch podcast and Facebook group.  There is a wealth of information available no matter where you are in your journey to build a profitable practice. If you know of another book that belongs on this list let us know here or tell us about it in the comments. Make sure you’re also following The Therapist’s Bookshelf on Facebook and Instagram.


Many therapists enjoy recommending books to their clients to supplement the work they are doing together. We also use books to help ourselves grow as people and practitioners. Remember though that books are never a replacement for real human connection or for therapy when it’s needed. If you find yourself needing a therapist, a great place to start is Psychology Today. If you are having thoughts of hurting yourself or someone else, please contact the National Suicide Prevention Hotline.


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