Our Conference Narrative and Your Practice

| Association for Mental Health Professionals

Our annual conference is shaping up nicely. In fact, Day 2 has been totally populated with the speakers we targeted, and Day 1 is a whisper away from being complete. As of this writing we have them all lined up, just awaiting confirmation on 3 of them and how many draft picks it's gonna cost us, but this year's All-Star Team is in place. Boom!

I'm not going to run through the lineup here because you can hear that in our weekly 5-10 minute audio update, so go have a quick listen.

How Will This Conference Be Different?

In keeping with our association's stated purpose and objectives:

1. Our PRIMARY objective at this conference is to give you, the front-line counselor, the tools you need to deal with the unique, post-covid issues that you're seeing in your office right now.

2. We'll accomplish the Primary Directive through a structured narrative that gives an orderly accounting of events affecting the counseling world, and...

3. There will be NO WOKE topic or agendas promoted; no normalization of mental illness in any form, no promoting of any of the post-modern (Woke) irrational, illogical worldview tenets. That includes our speaker roster and our sponsors and exhibitors.

That pretty much sums it up.

2023 Conference Narrative Overview

What I'd like to do today is give you a semi-detailed overview of the conference narrative. Think of it as a 5 chapter outline of the story of our time as it pertains to the world of counseling and how we believe we need to adapt.

Part 1: The Fight in Front of Us

This will be a visual diagram of events being played out in front of us on the world stage. The two concept-questions it will raise are these:

1. How are these events affecting our clients' mental health? What's showing up in your office right now that is unique to the past 3-5 years' events?

2. As counselors, what do we really need to know about these issues, and how much do we need to know, to be effective with our clients?

Part 2: How Did We Get Here?

We're going to take a very quick look at what some of the greatest minds of the 19th and 20th century have given us to work with and the disastrous outcomes. We'll explore how we've been left to clean up the mess and tell those still fighting the fight that the war is long since over. It'll explain a lot and give you a platform free of guilt and confusion upon which to stand.

Part 3: The Current State of Our Profession

"The Allopathic Wheel" is a neck-up approach to treating clients in use for the past 100 years. As long as our client's mental health issue isn't tied to a cause emanating from poor nutrition or physical ailment, we might be able to help. But a quick review of our profession's track record statistics over the past 100 years yields a failing grade. What we're doing is not working as it should be and we need a new approach to treatment; a new treatment model.

Part 4: Self-Assessment-Where Do We Go From Here?

We need a cold, clinical approach to self-assessment free of social ideology---one that will identify what's working and what needs improvement based on empirical data not failed philosophy, subjective feelings, group identity politics or profit motives. We need to put a stop to allowing social justice thinking from dictating what qualifies as scientific advancement in our profession.

We must adopt a "treat the cause" mindset and practice it through the development of new approaches and treatment options. Find out what the medical community did prior to 1900 that worked, and re-introduce those techniques. What technology is available to us now that wasn't available pre-1900? Answering those questions will lead us directly to a new model for treating mental health, The Whole Body Approach to Mental Health.

Part 5: A New Model, New Outcomes

A "cause-focused", holistic approach model should see large improvements in the industry's positive outcomes. This model will begin as a hybrid of both the Allopathic and Holistic models with the latter becoming the pre-dominant form of care in the next 10-20 years. The model will make positive strides only as fast as it is accepted by the public so the more counselors that get on board with the inevitable evolution of the industry, the faster that overall acceptance will happen.

There are other factors as well, like getting insurance to eventually pay for alternative treatment but that's not likely to change until enough of us clamor for it. But it will change. As a group, we clamor pretty good, don't we!

The Big Ask

The changes are coming, indeed they are already happening, one front-line counselor at a time.

We got this. You coming?

Got Something to Say?

These posts are based on the beliefs and personal experience of the post's author. Please feel free to leave your civil, constructive comments below. We try very hard to back up our statements with fact-based data and we ask you to do the same in your comments. You do not need to be logged in to leave a comment.

About the Author

| Association for Mental Health ProfessionalsKathleen Mills is a fire-breathing, 32+ year veteran of the counseling world. People react in one of two ways when evil touches their lives: some retreat in fear, and some advance without pause to engage it. Kathleen falls firmly in the latter group. She owns and operates Life Tree Counseling in Frisco, TX, possesses a tireless work-ethic, and eagerly awaits your arrival into her growing army of warriors.

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