A major obstacle professionals may face when their licenses come under attack—especially unfairly—is the stumbling block of self-doubt. Of course, you earned your professional license; otherwise, you wouldn’t have it. (That’s what the licensing boards are there for, after all—to make sure that only qualified individuals are granted professional degrees.) But people don’t always react logically to these sorts of blows to our professional identities. We’re only human.
When other people engage in negative talk about us, many individuals have a tendency to internalize it, to turn it into negative self-talk. And so, in addition to seeking qualified counsel to assist with an attack on your license—which should be a source of solace in and of itself—we recommend taking some steps to keep your faith in yourself alive.
According to the consummate professionals at the Mayo Clinic, positive thinking is a key component to combating the sort of stress that may lead to or accompany self-doubt.
Before you start thinking we’re suggesting an unrealistic, pointlessly ‘Pollyanna’ approach to life, consider this: there is real evidence to suggest that engaging in (realistic) positive thinking can have serious life benefits, such as increased longevity, lower chance of depression, a stronger immune system, and improved cardiovascular health—not to mention being better able to handle periods of high stress such as this.
In this case, positive thinking is about taking an approach toward the unpleasantness that accompanies the attack on your license in a more positive (and therefore productive) fashion. If you manage to better handle the stress, you will be able to go the distance. The goal here is to believe that the best will happen—rather than the worst. And to make this happen, you need to put in the effort to avoid personalizing the attack on your license, and catastrophizing the situation (that’s another way of saying you assume this attack on your license means a foregone conclusion that your license will be revoked—which can lead to poor choices such as not hiring the legal assistance necessary to fight the accusations).
It’s important that you catch yourself if you find yourself internally telling yourself things you would never say to someone else in your situation. Instead, be encouraging to yourself. When a critical thought crosses your mind, counter it with a rational reappraisal, then re-affirm yourself with positive thoughts and gratitude for other things in your life.
The Mayo Clinic has more detailed information on this type of self-care. For our part, we are glad to help professionals, like you, keep their licenses when those licenses are under attack by a state agency or board—and that can be a big reason to look on the bright side.
BERTOLINO LLP proudly represents licensed professionals across the entire State of Texas. To best serve our clients we have offices in Austin, Houston, and San Antonio. If you are facing disciplinary action from a professional licensing board or state agency, contact us today or call (512) 717-5432 and schedule a case evaluation.
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