Learn these essential protocols for Psychologists and Coaches:
1. You first need to take time to educate yourself about Veterans and their territory. Ignorance will not get you through their front door.
2. Demonstrate trust and respect through being informed and understanding their language.
3. Ask yourself whether you are planning to be a part of the problem or a collaborative solution.
4. Listen and learn before you try preaching and teaching.
5. Assess your modalities you use. All veterans are different. One size does not fit all. Simply using one “evidence based” modality with a one size fit all approach is not going to work.
6. Try leaving your professional ego at the door. Get real. Get human.
7. Don’t expect compliance to what you think is best practice. You haven’t earned the right to rank.
8. Degrees may equal smart, but your behaviour and presence may still be stupid. Who you are and the informed care and respect you demonstrate mean everything.
9. Who you are is more important than what you do. Sort out your people skills if necessary.
10. A veteran entering your room is entitled to sit facing wherever he wishes. Move or vacate your chair if needed.
11. Trauma is in the brain and body. Think about extending your training and skill set to include Brain, Body and Neuroscience based understanding and modalities. Veterans are flexible and adaptable and will expect the same from you.
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