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Mental Health Counselor

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What is a Mental Health Counselor?

Mental Health Counselor Job Description Counsel with emphasis on prevention. Work with individuals and groups to promote optimum mental and emotional health. May help individuals deal with issues associated with addictions and substance abuse; family, parenting, and marital problems; stress management; self-esteem; and aging.

Life As a Mental Health Counselor

  • Prepare and maintain all required treatment records and reports.
  • Evaluate clients' physical or mental condition, based on review of client information.
  • Evaluate the effectiveness of counseling programs on clients' progress in resolving identified problems and moving towards defined objectives.
  • Coordinate or direct employee workshops, courses, or training about mental health issues.
  • Discuss with individual patients their plans for life after leaving therapy.
  • Counsel clients or patients, individually or in group sessions, to assist in overcoming dependencies, adjusting to life, or making changes.

Mental Health Counselor Required Skills

Below is a list of the skills most Mental Health Counselors say are important on the job.

Active Listening: Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.

Social Perceptiveness: Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.

Speaking: Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Service Orientation: Actively looking for ways to help people.

Writing: Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.

Judgment and Decision Making: Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.

Types of Mental Health Counselor Jobs

  • Mental Health Counselor
  • Mental Health Case Manager
  • Clinical Mental Health Counselor
  • Mental Health Therapist
  • Residential Child Care Counselor

Job Opportunities for Mental Health Counselors

In the United States, there were 157,700 jobs for Mental Health Counselor in 2016. New jobs are being produced at a rate of 23.1% which is above the national average. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 36,500 new jobs for Mental Health Counselor by 2026. The BLS estimates 21,600 yearly job openings in this field.

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The states with the most job growth for Mental Health Counselor are Utah, Arizona, and Virginia. Watch out if you plan on working in Illinois, Kansas, or Maine. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

Tools & Technologies Used by Mental Health Counselors

Below is a list of the types of tools and technologies that Mental Health Counselors may use on a daily basis:

  • Microsoft Excel
  • Microsoft Word
  • Microsoft Office
  • Microsoft PowerPoint
  • Microsoft Outlook
  • Web browser software
  • Microsoft Access
  • Email software
  • Word processing software
  • Spreadsheet software
  • Database software
  • Microsoft Dynamics
  • Oracle PeopleSoft
  • Scheduling software
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer
  • Statistical software
  • Patient electronic medical record EMR software
  • Netscape Navigator
  • Management information systems MIS
  • Office suite software

Becoming a Mental Health Counselor

What education or degrees do I need to become a Mental Health Counselor?

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How Long Does it Take to Become a Mental Health Counselor?

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Are you already one of the many Mental Health Counselor in the United States? If you’re thinking about changing careers, these fields are worth exploring:

References:

Image Credit: Staff Sgt. Katie Spencer via Public domain

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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