What Does A Professional Psychic Do?
Written by Alexandra Chauran. Copyright(c) 2009, Psychic Jobs Online, all rights reserved. Originally published as "What To Expect Working As A Psychic" in Psychic Jobs Online.com.
As a professional psychic, I often get silly, joking questions about my job, especially from fair attendees who gawk at me like I am from another planet. "If you're a psychic," one gentleman asked, leaning over my price guide with his friends, "what am I thinking about right now?" I smiled coolly and replied with a laugh, "I read cards, not minds!" Often this remark is met with a quizzical expression and followed up by incredulous questions about my profession. By the time the reading has been performed, the client has been astounded, but perhaps not in a way that he expected. You see, in the mind of the general public, psychic work is often synonymous with telepathy or even some sort of omniscience! Rightfully concluding that nobody can peer over everything that is, was, and ever shall be without error, some conclude that we don't even exist!
While it may be simple to gently pull apart the stereotype for clients who are open to understanding, more subtle delusions may breed rampantly in the minds of those who choose to go into professional psychic work. Shocked by all they are doing or not doing that does not match up to their expectations, new professional psychics often head for the hills, making it a high-turnover industry with faces that are rarely seen repeatedly at fairs and festivals, and leaving clients disappointed to learn that they can no longer contact their most loved psychic because he or she no longer works for the company. In an effort to help new professional psychics decide whether the needs of their clients and employers truly matches the calling they feel to the field, I'll show a few common expectations that need to be blown out of the water, and a few essential parts of the business that might catch a new person off-guard!
Incorrect Job Descriptions You Might Have Wrongly Expected
Best Friend - "Girl, you know that man is bad news! Stay away from him!" While a certain amount of friendly rapport and camaraderie may be what drew you to the field, and the amount of self disclosure that clients choose to confide in you bolsters that feeling, don't fall into the best friend trap! You will have to hurt your clients sometimes with the news that is to be shared, and you may have to be firm with them in a way that would seem cold and cruel to you towards your best friend. So how can you look forward to your next call if it isn't from your best friend? When I was a school-teacher, I assumed at first that I would like and enjoy every child. It turns out that you can treat people with respect and serve them even when you do not love them as a best friend. Not only does keeping professional boundaries keep you safe, but it also keeps you from playing favourites with your clients!
Crisis Hot-Line - The phone rings in the middle of the night. You jump out of bed and answer it to find a crying client distraught. Your husband nods knowingly as you exit the room to your office. He knows you have work to do. While this image might be a romantic thought to those of us who love to feel needed, it is the quickest route to burn-out. No one, single person is equipped to serve as a crisis hot-line. It is easy for a helper personality to be drawn to the excitement of being "there" for clients at all costs, and I do mean costs. It begins as one sob story about not having the means to pay, and if you fancy yourself a crisis hot-line, you'll soon be up at all hours of the night giving free readings to those "in need." I know, because that was me ten years ago. Set your boundaries now. If they can't afford readings, chances are they know what their priority should be right now without a reading. You need to help yourself first, in order to help others, and serving as the worlds crisis hot-line might only be standing in between your beloved clients and the help they truly need.
Physician - If I had a nickel for every time a woman asked me if she was pregnant... Hey wait a minute, if I charged a nickel every time, I would! It may seem ridiculous to you, but it is easier than you think to get sucked into giving advice for which you are unqualified, thus taking valuable time and money away from the client that she could be spending on a doctor or a pregnancy test. While divination can be a healthy part of family planning, say it out-loud to yourself now, "I am not a doctor!" Now, don't forget to say it out-loud to your clients, too!
Attorney - No matter what your per minute or hourly charge, you may still be more affordable than the lawyer that is needed by a client! Strangely enough, the less qualified you are to answer a question, the more you may talk yourself into advising on the matter, thinking that there are already procedures in motion, or that you are about as unbiased a third party as your client can get! There are pro bono attorneys available for consultation in many areas if the client does some digging, and in criminal cases your client or the subject of his or her reading may already have been appointed one. While you may be an important part of your clients' lives, make sure they've talked to an attorney first!
Financial Advisor - More than the previous two cases, this is the area of life in which clients may not even know they have a qualified professional to which to turn for advice! On top of that, besides love, money is often one of the top topics of psychic readings. If you were to allow yourself, you could easily fill your day advising on property values, family assets, divorce allocations and even stocks! Make sure your clients know that there are people out there who actually do have this as part of their job descriptions!
Correct Job Descriptions You Might Not Have Anticipated
Counselor - Counseling is providing advice and guidance, and in my state, one must be registered as a counselor in order to charge money for such. Becoming a counselor may come with other job functions beyond your expectations. There may be continuing education required, and you may be a "mandated reporter," meaning that legally you must break client confidentiality to report to the authorities in cases in which clients are a danger to themselves or others or gravely disabled. Are you ready to take on those extra obligations?
Emotional Dumping Ground - My husband's choice of words, not mine! As a psychic, you are often the only person to whom a client may feel it is socially acceptable to unload negative energy. If you don't have shields, whether they be metaphorical or metaphysical, you'll quickly be burned out of the business! This emotional dumping can be indirect, such as simply causing pain in an empath when a client unburdens his or her life story. Or the dumping can be incredibly direct, in the form of angry phone calls or vicious ratings left after a reading. If you are not prepared to deal with the incredible influx of emotional energy that can come from clients and even other readers, please give serious consideration to how deeply you wish to involve yourself with this line of work.
Business Owner - If you're working in-person in many contexts, you'll need to get a license for your business in your state and possibly city. Being a business owner is a full-time job in and of itself! You may have to scout brick and mortar locations for your business, hire employees or contractors, and find out all of the legal nuances of working in your area. If this seems like too much work that is not directly involved with your true calling, consider working for a company and scrapping the idea of starting up your own web-site or store before it snowballs into something energetically or financially costly.
Accountant - You owe federal and possibly state taxes, potentially even quarterly! You'll have to account for every transaction, with receipts when necessary, and make note of any write-offs. Even if you hire your own accountant, there's a lot of work that must be done directly if you are working in various contexts! Again, if this is something so far away from your true calling that you wish to avoid it like the plague, I suggest choosing one company for which to work, and making sure they are legitimate enough to account for your earnings themselves!
Marketer - So you've done all the work of setting up your own web-site or shop or signing up with a company you like. Why isn't your phone ringing off the hook yet? The psychic industry is enormous and in constant flux with tremendous numbers of talented competitors! Even if you are incredibly skilled and confident that word-of-mouth will spread, up until this point of your life that same word-of-mouth has only gotten you to where you are at this moment! Unless you promote yourself, up to and including paying for advertising, you may find yourself frustrated with a lack of clients or call volume.