A Bit of Advice

A Bit of Advice

Curt and Katie talk about advice-giving in session, looking at the complexities, pros and cons, and how and when to give advice to clients.

It’s time to reimagine therapy and what it means to be a therapist. To support you as a whole person and a therapist, your hosts, Curt Widhalm and Katie Vernoy talk about how to approach the role of therapist in the modern age.

In this episode we talk about:

  • Why, when to give advice in session
  • How to process the other pieces before giving advice
  • Therapeutic techniques that help in problem-solving before giving advice
  • Gender differences in approaching therapy, including who is looking more for “solutions”
  • How to assess because each individual has a different capacity to ask for help and/or seek advice
  • Solution-based advice versus process-oriented advice
  • The difference between clinical and coaching interventions
  • Developmental stages of decision-making and how they can impact when and how to give advice
  • How to assess whether you’ve crossed a boundary with the advice you’re giving
  • Urgency and crisis-related advice
  • The importance of seeing from your client’s perspective
  • Looking at what your advice is based on
  • The downsides of refusing to give an opinion, not self-disclosing – interacting as human beings can be richer therapeutically
  • The complexities as well as the pros and cons of giving advice

Our Generous Sponsor:

Thanks again to our sponsor, Ben Caldwell Labs. If you’re a therapist, there’s a good chance you already know Ben. He has built his career fighting for you, and for me, and for all of us to be able to do well even in a challenging professional landscape. Check out BenCaldwellLabs.com for his books, California exam prep, continuing education, and more. Thinking of taking your practice online? Visit bencaldwelllabs.com/online to get 20% off their on-demand CE course, Basics of Telehealth.

Resources mentioned:

We’ve pulled together resources mentioned in this episode and put together some handy-dandy links.

Other Relevant Episodes:

What Clients Want

Our event this year:

The Therapy Reimagined Conference in Los Angeles in October 2018!!

Our new consultation services:

The Fifty-Minute Hour

Who we are:

Curt Widhalm is a Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in private practice in the Los Angeles area. He is a Board Member at Large for the California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists, a Subject Matter Expert for the California Board of Behavioral Sciences, Adjunct Faculty at Pepperdine University, and a loving husband and father. He is 1/2 great person, 1/2 provocateur, and 1/2 geek, in that order. He dabbles in the dark art of making “dad jokes” and usually has a half-empty cup of coffee somewhere nearby. Learn more at: http://www.curtwidhalm.com

Katie Vernoy is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, coach, and consultant. As a helping professional for two decades, she’s navigated the ups and downs of our unique line of work. She’s run her own solo therapy practice, designed innovative clinical programs, built and managed large, thriving teams of service providers, and consulted hundreds of helping professionals on how to build meaningful AND sustainable practices. In her spare time, Katie is secretly siphoning off Curt’s youthful energy, so that she can take over the world. Learn more at: http://www.katievernoy.com

A Quick Note:

Our opinions are our own. We are only speaking for ourselves – except when we speak for each other, or over each other. We’re working on it.

Our guests are also only speaking for themselves and have their own opinions. We aren’t trying to take their voice, and no one speaks for us either. Mostly because they don’t want to, but hey.

Stay in Touch:



Our Facebook Group – The Modern Therapist’s Survival Guide Group





Voice Over by DW McCann https://www.facebook.com/McCannDW/

Music by Crystal Grooms Mangano http://www.crystalmangano.com/

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