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Top 10 Best Things About Being a Music Therapist

by Kimberly on July 19, 2012 · 5 comments

Earlier this week, I received an email from a Maven reader with an interesting question:

I was wondering, what is the greatest and hardest/disliked part of your job?

Funny enough, I have never considered this question before! Although I was able to give him an answer fairly easily, his question sparked an idea: Can I list the top 10 best and the top 10 worst parts about being a music therapist?

This week, I will list what I consider to be the top 10 best things about being a music therapist. Next week, look for my list of the top 10 worst things…

Top 10 Best Things About Being a Music Therapist

  1. I get to witness some incredible change in people.
  2. The music part often makes the therapy part kind of easy.
  3. I get to sing. A lot.
  4. More often than not, I put a smile on people’s faces and they are happy to see me.
  5. I get to listen to some incredibly talented musicians.
  6. Telling someone I am a music therapist is an almost surefire way to get a conversation started.
  7. The science and mystery surrounding the impact music has on us is fascinating.
  8. I have access to some pretty fun toys (especially of the drumming and percussion variety).
  9. Job flexibility—particularly as a music therapist in private practice.
  10. It is humbling and inspiring to be around and learn from these incredible, resilient, vulnerable, and strong people I get to work with.

Just for fun, I also asked others to share what they feel are the best and worst parts about being a music therapist. Here are their favorite parts:

  • I’m only a student but in my practicum work the best thing is just seeing the clients eyes light up during a session and knowing how much they love and value everything their doing, even if they can not express it in words. – Freddy
  • Best thing – knowing that the music made a difference in the life of my patients and/or their families. – Sheri
  • Best is getting to use a talent and love and a skill and get paid for it. – Valerie
  • Best is combining areas of passion. – JoAnn
  • Best thing-giving a child a “voice” to move and work through trauma and seeing their quality of life improve. – Lauren
  • Best thing- making music everyday, reaching people who were thought to be unreachable, creating. – Stacey
  • Best thing: The “oh my goodness!!!” look on my client’s faces when they surprise themselves with a break through. – Amanda
  • Best thing – the clients. Stacey put is so well! – Linda

Did I forget anything? Do you have something to add to the list? Let us know in the comments section below!

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{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Emily Sevcik July 19, 2012 at 6:06 am

Great post! I agree with all of those reasons!
Emily Sevcik´s last blog post ..Ingrid Michelson Concert in Indianapolis

Anita L. Gadberry, Ph.D., MT-BC July 19, 2012 at 12:04 pm

Wow, I can’t believe you were able to narrow it down to just 10! Let’s do 100 best things! I believe strongly in the relationships that are created. Between the music and the client and the therapist there are a tremendous number of relationships that are created and they are all influencing the therapeutic moment.

Kimberly July 20, 2012 at 2:11 pm

@Anita It wasn’t easy! On the flip side, I’m posting a list of the “10 worst things” next week. That was a hard list to create! Guess I’m in the right profession for me 🙂 ~Kimberly

Ellen de Havilland July 27, 2012 at 8:37 am

Anita…I couldn’t agree more. I value those relationships with my clients more than anything in the world. It’s cheesy to say, but they constantly remind me of how beautiful life is. I can’t get over how lucky I am to work with some of the strongest people in the world.

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