Contributing Writer — Surabhi Sanghi

Name – Amita Puri

Profession – Clinical Psychologist

Age – 50

Gender – Female

City – Gurgaon

Industry – Healthcare

Insights

  1. This is a job which requires a lot of patience not only with your client but also in your career.
  2. One has to be empathetic, warm and patient.
  3. One must not lose their calm at any point especially in front of the client.

Where have you been born and raised?

I was born in Varanasi in Uttar Pradesh. But my upbringing has been in Chandigarh.

What is your family background? Who all had the most influence on you and how?

I have grown in a family of Doctors, educationists and Professionals. My father was a renowned Clinical Psychologist and the Head of the Department at PGI Chandigarh, whereas my mother was a housewife. I think my parents and grandparents have had the most influence on me. I would say even my teachers had a role in shaping me.

Please give us a summary of your career.

I completed my PhD from PGI, Chandigarh in 1994 and henceforth worked in Army Institute of Education for 12 years. I have been associated with institutes like Amity University and IIT Delhi and have been a visiting counselor at IIIT-D for the past 9 years. I have been a consultant psychologist at various hospitals and I currently work at Citizen Hospital in Gurgaon.

Which institutes are best for the education/training of this profession?

According to me the best institutions for training in my field would be the various PGI’s and AIIMS of the country. These are top institutions of the country and since they are government universities, fees are also less.

What are the costs associated with the education/training of this profession?

Overall in a government college, total fees for the whole of your career should come around to 4–6 lacks as far as my knowledge is concerned.

What are the typical entry level jobs in this profession?

One can start their profession by interning and training with various hospitals, corporate organizations, free lancing, school counselors etc. Today the scope of counseling has increased manifold and counsellors are needed in every field.

What is the range of remuneration one can expect when starting out in your line of career & industry?

Above figures are tentative and may vary from individual to individual

Describe your work? What do you typically do on a normal work day?

I see cases of disorders, anxiety, depression, marriage counseling, adolescent counseling, relationship management, learning disabilities, developmental disorders, psychotic cases.

What are some of the positives, which would encourage someone to consider this career/job?

As a healer we impact the lives of people by enhancing their well-being. We strive to bring positivity in the lives of our clients and work for the mental health betterment. The clients come back to us and tell us that they are feeling better and that’s a reward worth more than money.

What are some of the challenges that you would want someone to be aware of when considering this career/job?

This profession does not pay well initially as it needs lot of internships and hands on training experience. This obviously requires a lot of patience. Sometimes while engaging with a patient the phenomenon of negative transference can also occur. “Negative transference is the psychoanalytic term for the transference of negative and hostile feelings, rather than positive ones, onto a therapist (or other emotional object).”

What are the relevant trends/skills/technologies that are currently commanding premium in your job profile?

Some of the most important skills to have which are absolutely necessary are counseling skills and updating with medical diagnosis and psychopharmacology. It is important to be empathetic, patient and a good listener. One should also know how to gain trust of other people or else they will not open to you. So, you have to be warm and gentle too.

What kind of person would be happy in your career?

In my view a person who is relaxed, patient, cheerful and spiritual kind of a person. That person should be warm, empathetic with a positive personality and who has regard for fellow human beings.

Given another choice, what would you do differently as far as your professional selections are concerned? Would you pursue another profession or a passion perhaps?

Not really. But apart from consultations, teaching is also my cup of tea.

What would be your advice to students or professionals who are just starting their journey on a path similar to yours?

As a person who is very spiritual, my advice to young people would be to have patience, hone your skills with good internship experience and remain cheerful and spiritual.