The occupation of psychologist or coach is itself already subject to a perverse incentive. After all, the more sessions, the more cash for the (independent) therapist.

The profession of psychologist or coach is already subject to a perverse stimulus. After all, the more sittings the more cash for the (freelance) therapist.

Despite the fact that many fellow practitioners preach that they 'never do this', according to a report from the Cultural Planning Bureau, therapists actually gain self-enrichment at the expense of their client. There is a step-by-step reward, as you can read in the attached article from ‘@psycholoog’, a Dutch publication. If you are just on the border, join a session so you can get more out of your treatment, while the client may have already finished.

Incidentally, this does not only happen in our occupational group, it happens everywhere. On the basis of this, there is a human error that many policy makers fail to observe. Rolf Dobelli calls it the 'incentive super-response tendency'. I call it stimulation measures.

An example of this is the the 19th century Rat Pest Control Act. In the French colonial era, a proclamation was made in Hanoi: Money would be given for every dead rat that was delivered to the government. This meant that rat breeding flourished and the number of rats in Hanoi increased to unprecedented heights.

People, and thus psychologists, respond to stimulation measures. Everyone does what works to his advantage. People react to the incentive, but not always to the underlying intention. So in the case of our therapists, the intention is not to give the client an unnecessarily long treatment. That works to some extent, until the rate limit is in sight. Then the incentive to continue is strengthened. The higher benefit is almost within reach and tempts many people to prolong their therapy.

We provocative psychologists know this error like no other. We not only encourage our clients to discover these stimulation systems in the world, so that they have a more realistic view of how the world works, but we also talk openly about our remuneration and the favor that a client grants us by making slow progress. We use this ‘thinking error’ to our advantage and praise the client for not doing his homework. For example, this homework may include trying out new behavior in the workplace.

Client: I did not have an opportunity to try out my feedback on my boss. I did not know what to give him feedback on.

Therapist: Very good, you are just someone who takes time (played painlessly with a wink) and that's not bad at all for my money box, because then your therapy will take a few months longer?

Usually, the client starts protesting and expanding his motivation to get properly started next time.

Doing the counter-intuitive thing is what provocative psychologists can do very well and for a healthy reason:

(A) the client is encouraged to take action;

B) the perverse stimulus is opened, exposed and therefore recognized;

C) The client sees himself as responsible for getting better, because it costs him more money if he does not take action.



This seems to me a money box for society.

On to sustainable therapy, the provocative therapy.