It is maybe easier to answer the question with what a clinical psychologist is not. We are not mind readers, most of us don’t have couches for you to lie on and we won’t think you are “crazy”. These are some of the common responses I have had when I tell people what I do. Unfortunately there can still be a lot of unnecessary stigma around mental health and psychology.
For me, being a clinical psychologist is about using the knowledge and skills I have gained during training and beyond to work with people to improve their wellbeing and help them move towards the life they want to live. It is being interested in people, their experiences and how this influences what they do.
A clinical psychologist uses their training, research evidence and clinical experience to help understand what is going on at that moment for the individual, what may have influenced it and from that shared understanding, identify what types of treatment may be helpful. A psychologist would then support the individual through the process, adapting the treatment where needed.
A clinical psychologist does this through listening to you, asking questions, providing you with information and setting tasks to work on in between appointments. No mind reading involved!