Sometimes psychology is seen as something cold and removed from people’s real concerns. To dispel this myth, there is nothing better than knowing this discipline from the hands of those who are dedicated to it: psychologists.
In this case, we interviewed Guacimara Hernández , a psychologist who offers her psychotherapy sessions in the Canary city of Arrecife.
Interview with Guacimara Hernández Santana, psychologist
Guacimara is a psychologist specializing in Clinical and Health Psychology and Sexology. In this interview she talks about her professional day-to-day life and her impressions about her work with patients.
You have extensive experience as a clinical psychologist. What made you study psychology?
It’s true that when I started to study the career I saw it as something very complicated, but at the same time when you like something you study it very hard. It’s a very pleasant career path when it comes to helping others, that’s why.
Nowadays working on this for me is lucky, because it is what I like and the hours I dedicate to my work are many, but I can always count myself lucky because I chose well.
What characteristics do you think a good psychologist should possess?
The fundamental characteristics for me are safety, accessibility, patience and being in continuous training. And above all, to know well that the person is looking for help and not all of us are specialized in that same thing, the first thing is to start from whether or not we can carry out that case, that is to say, to refer to another professional.
Although it is increasingly accepted to go to a psychologist, some people still think that going to psychotherapy is a sign of weakness. Have you noticed this?
I see this less and less. People are increasingly normalizing this whole process, and they are trying not to suffer so much and to catch the problems in time. A psychologist gives you the guidelines and makes you see the good side of things, and many times we suffer and prolong the suffering without need.
What problems or disorders do you deal with most often?
Anxiety and depression are the most recurrent cases in my practice, but there are also many cases of OCD, low self-esteem, eating disorders, chronic pain
What do you think is the obstacle for a person to go to a psychologist’s office for help?
Some people tend to see the need for consistency in therapy as a problem, believe they won’t be able to follow a guideline and want very fast results. Once in therapy I always tell them that I don’t leave them alone, and the wellness process comes next.
In your experience, have you gone to another specialist to support a patient’s recovery process?
Many times I have to refer patients, but the problem is that I have weeks of waiting to take on more people and because of lack of space in my schedule I usually refer other professionals. Also, when the patient needs it, we work as a team with Psychiatry.
When do you think it’s time to seek the help of a psychologist?
When you see that your life is not what you expected, when everything becomes dark and especially when you see that for a long time something is not right in you, that’s the time. We were born to live life, not to be always in continuous survival