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What is a #realpsychologist?

People are asking me what #realpsychologist means. I am thrilled that it has caught people’s eyes and am hopeful that more people will consider using it to keep the conversation going.

A #realpsychologist leverages social media.

Real psychologists realize that most people search for everything they need or want online. Even if a friend or family member makes a recommendation, most people will Google anyone to whom they are referred.

Anyone who wishes to stay in business must be easily searchable and have a clear, attractive online presence. Social media is the best way to build that.

In addition, people search for information online, even if they are not seeking treatment. It is up to psychologists—experts in human thoughts, feelings, and behaviors—to provide accessible and reliable information.

A #realpsychologist uses and promotes evidence-based practices.

Real psychologists embrace and disseminate only evidence-based treatments and advice. When we join conversations, we take care to let the public know the evidence that exists for our assertions. If we are giving an opinion, we make sure to state that clearly.

A #realpsychologist behaves ethically.

The rules that guide us offline extend to social media. Real psychologists use only the titles granted by their licenses or certifications. Real psychologists practice and provide advice only within their areas of competence. Real psychologists respect confidentiality and rules about advertising and other public statements.

If real psychologists learn to promote themselves, their practices, and each other through social media, we can build a strong community.

A vibrant community will ensure our professional future and provide access for those who need our help.

The best way to know what #realpsychologist means is to search for it on Twitter.

Please use the tag as appropriate in future posts. I may have started the conversation, but I look forward to it growing into something with much greater reach.




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