Episode 24 - Melvin Varghese - Online Counselling
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That was shocking to me. Tell us about that. Well, I think Selling the Couch started with this like genuine curiosity of how can I learn from the wisdom of people that have gone before me, other practitioners and then how can I learn from these other experts in business and marketing? Did you see yourself going in the direction of the Joe Sanoks and ZynnyMe and coaching other people Melvin: Not at this point. I think more than anything, I just want the information available and I want to hopefully be that person that connects my colleagues to some of these awesome resources that are out there and then the stuff that I have learned along the way, teaching some of that stuff.
I had a couple of sessions ago, I just did like 45 minutes, I think, worth of just content on everything I learned about building an ecourse — from gear and software to recording to researching to prelaunching and all that kind of stuff.
This is just a unique way of doing it. You mentioned resources that there are some great resources out there that helped you. Are there some that maybe you could share? What should we be aware of out there? Man, that is a tough question. No, seriously now, I think there are some amazing private practice, like, coaches out there, people that have gone through the journey.
Kelly and Miranda, ZynnyMe, like they are awesome. Yeah, I mean, that is a very tough question. Okay, maybe not just the consultants but beyond that, SEO tools or plugins on WordPress, or something like that.
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I had Hal Elrod on the podcast. As much as possible, seven days a week, I wake up at 4: You have to convince me on that one. Maybe I should revisit this as an adult. This is the Online Counselling Podcast, right?
That was the first time that I ever heard of that concept. This makes no sense, like, mental health over a telephone? I think all of those things, it makes perfect sense that that would translate into our space of counseling.
We recently talked for Selling the Couch. After we talked, I just kept thinking. I was like, my license is in Pennsylvania so why am I restricting myself to just Philadelphia? Once people begin thinking about it, they start connecting the dots and start seeing the possibility. Most private practitioners, I think we started a small business because we want that freedom, right?
We want to be our own boss and we want to maybe to come home and be able to pick up a child or to say goodbye to a child when they go to school or have meals with our family at night.
I think something like online counseling, it affords us that because it gives us that schedule flexibility if we need it. This person specialized in survivors of borderline personality disorder, like family members — husbands of wives that have borderline and wives of husbands that have borderline, maybe children or parents that have borderline personality disorder.
They lived in a small town in Texas and how many borderlines are in this small town of Texas? Probably not a lot, but there are a lot of people out there in need of someone that has expertise of dealing with the trauma of surviving that type of person and that illness. To have the ability to connect with those people as a business person but also as, maybe just have a call way to do that is just magnifying. What are you up to now?Matt Damon and Jimmy Kimmel Return to Couples Counseling
Yeah, it has gone quite large. I thought we could help each other as professionals and help us. We started our private practices and I think as the podcast has grown, the community has grown. Yeah, adding over or less than members a week. How are they finding you? I think part of it is word of mouth. It has all kind of been organic. Are there any fellow Californians that could help me with this billing thing?
I think there are a lot of really kindhearted people that really want to give back. And platform is a great word. It really has become that. Are you familiar with that? We have a mover, an attorney, an insurance guy, a therapist, and so we all help each other.
I think as the community has grown, I try to come at it from a perspective of like how can I continue to provide and thought more and more about you, so we have daily threads on different things, everything from… Clay: Yes, I love that. Those are fun, like coming up names for them. You cycle them, what, every two weeks I think? Some of them cycle every week and then some of them are every other week. We have like a Website Feedback Tuesday.
You post your private practice website and the next person who posts it gives honest feedback about how you can improve your website, stuff like that.
How much is it for you to manage because you do have to manage this. There are rules around this community. I think by and large, the community has been, like, people are awesome, but yeah, you do have to have some structures in place. For example, I have a Free Promo Friday thread, right, but if 1, people just posted all of their promotional stuff all over the place, the community would be overwhelmed, right?
I tend to give people the benefit of the doubt. Maybe they just forgot or something like that or they are just new. I usually do that. As far as managing it, I can get a little bit nerdy with my schedules. I set aside some time like half an hour in the morning and usually half an hour in the afternoons where I manage that community.
I have the Selling the Couch community and then I have a separate community for my podcasting course. Do you read pretty much everything that people are commenting? I mean, there are probably over comments in any given day. You really have created an incredible supportive community.
I love going there. I know other therapists that just love going and learning and getting that support because a lot of us are out here alone. I think the next plan is to take more of the online stuff and actually get together and do different meet ups and stuff. Like in person Selling the Couch? Yeah, yeah, like Selling the Couch meet ups, like all around the world. Yeah, I mean, lots of things have been constantly changing. I think a lot of our colleagues have reached out wanting to help launch their own podcast, grow it, and monetize it.
Episode 24 – Melvin Varghese
I teach that and I have a course around that. You can ask some question kind of format.
That would be cool. You have created them. They will be there forever if somebody wants to go back and learn something else or they are not ready right at that moment. I hope you go in that direction. If I can at least be that resource and that means to help our field, I feel like if I can provide the resources to equip our field then the world is going to be a better place because you have better trained clinicians and clinicians that are happier and all those, and they are able to serve the world that really does need our services more than ever.
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