Overcoming Your Poverty Mindset

Overcoming Your Poverty Mindset

An interview with Tiffany McLain about how therapists deserve to make a good living and often do not. Curt and Katie interview Tiffany regarding her perspectives related to how sliding scale fees can perpetuate racist and classist systems, the problem with therapists sacrificing themselves and acting as saviors, and the impact you can make if you amass wealth and seek luxury.

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.

Interview with Tiffany McLain, LMFT

Tiffany McLain, LMFT is a therapist & consultant whose mantra is, “Full fees are the new black.” Via her program, The Lean In. MAKE BANK. Academy, she helps therapists ethically earn 30 to 50% more per month while seeing fewer clients by showing them how to think about and directly address fees in a clinically appropriate manner.

In this episode we talk about:

  • Tiffany’s Lean In Make Bank Academy
  • How current events are impacting therapists making money
  • The belief system that we are hurting clients by charging them
  • Why therapists are so susceptible to these messages
  • How women and minorities are external reinforced to sacrifice ourselves
  • The stigma of building wealth, living life more fully, seeking luxury
  • Grappling with raising fees, with people needing help
  • The internal dialogue that comes in when trying to raise fees
  • How luxury has been sustained on the backs of others
  • The misguided attempt to fix the system through self-sacrifice
  • What the cost is when you self-sacrificing
  • The problem with Saviorism
  • How a sliding scale can encourage racism and classism
  • Negating self-efficacy and fostering dependency, through lowering our fees
  • Sliding scale = subsidizing our client’s treatment
  • Tiffany’s experience with a sliding scale therapist
  • How gratitude for a therapist sliding their fee can lead to clients hiding themselves, not fully showing up or engaging in treatment effectively
  • The value issue related to people asking for a sliding fee or balking at paying the full fee
  • How these issues may come in at the beginning of a therapist’s career
  • Talking about your fee as a clinical intervention
  • Unconscious dynamics that keep us from acting on what we know re: setting fees and money
  • Money is a representation of the therapist’s need and desire
  • Processing emotional reactions to fee changes with clients. For example: “When I raise my fees, it hurts you” without collapsing, lowering the fee, or losing boundaries
  • The challenge of looking at financial capacity for individuals
  • The idea that we do not have to take care of individuals who cannot afford our fee in order to create access – and ideas of how we can increase impact once we’ve had the ability to create financial stability and wealth
  • The benefit to society of women gaining wealth, with the ability to make a bigger impact
  • The importance of setting your fee appropriately from the beginning

A Message From Therapy Reimagined:

Therapy Reimagined 2021 – The Modern Therapist Conference

Therapy Reimagined 2021 will be held virtually again this year September 23-25th! We are looking for fresh, diverse voices to speak on topics that often aren’t covered in grad school or in other continuing education platforms.

Our learning tracks:

  1. Business and Technology
  2. Ways of Being (focused on the therapist)
  3. Ways of Doing (focused on innovative treatment and populations who are often ignored by our profession).
  4. Misfits, Outliers, Subversives, and Skeptics: Challenging the Status Quo


Learn more here: https://therapyreimaginedconference.com/become-a-speaker/

Resources mentioned:

We’ve pulled together resources mentioned in this episode and put together some handy-dandy links. Please note that some of the links below may be affiliate links, so if you purchase after clicking below, we may get a little bit of cash in our pockets. We thank you in advance!

Lean in Make Bank Academy


Tiffany’s Fun with Fee Calculators

The Money Sessions Podcast

Relevant Episodes:

Making Bank as a Therapist

Gaslighting Therapists

In It For The Money?

Career Trekking with MTSG

Connect with us!

Our Facebook Group – The Modern Therapists Group

Get Notified About Therapy Reimagined Conferences

Our consultation services:

The Fifty-Minute Hour

Who we are:

Curt Widhalm is in private practice in the Los Angeles area. He is the cofounder of the Therapy Reimagined conference, an Adjunct Professor at Pepperdine University and CSUN, a former Subject Matter Expert for the California Board of Behavioral Sciences, former CFO of the California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists, 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 supporting leaders, visionaries, executives, and helping professionals to create sustainable careers. Katie, with Curt, has developed workshops and a conference, Therapy Reimagined, to support therapists navigating through the modern challenges of this profession. Katie is also Past President of the California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists. 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 Group





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

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

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