Updated Wednesday,30August2023-11:14

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The fact that today she is respected in her profession in fields such as toxic relationships, self-esteem, loneliness or emotional dependence, a prolific writer and a personality known and recognized for it in the networks, does not mean that she was born already learned. In fact, "it all started when I was a teenager with clear self-esteem problems," says Silvia Congost in Buscando Vocaciones. Problems that he was overcoming thanks to writing and that he was finally able to channel towards a professional future with the help of his philosophy teacher. A few years and several life experiences later, including a relationship in which I "got trapped," led her to specialize in the field of "emotional dependence." She sums it up like this: "It's like an addiction that we create and feel unable to cut" without proper help.

Congost does not believe "in professionals who know everything", but in specialization, and even more so if it comes from personal experience. "Analyzing what we have experienced is important. No one is more expert in something than those who have experienced it in the first person," he says. Along with geriatrics, perhaps mental health will very clearly be the health specialty with the highest demand for professionals in the future. In fact, the WHO believes that in just over five years, in 2030, it will be the leading cause of disease in the world.

Despite her youth, Silvia Congost remembers, however, beginnings in which mental health was something extremely strange, an eccentricity of Woody Allen film. "It was difficult to normalize it," he says, "to assume that you had to go to a psychologist." When he opened his first practice, in his village, "there were patients who came in with sunglasses looking sideways so no one would see them enter." Breaking that curse was his first great mission.

Psychologist Silvia Congost during a conference.

Contrary to what happened, "I wanted people to feel proud to go to Silvia Congost's consultation," he proclaims. Today it is clear that many things are changing. In 2022, Psychology was one of the most demanded university careers along with Computer Engineering, Physiotherapy or Marketing. But to reach the European average, Spain still needs to hire 6,000 professionals.

As in many other areas, the pandemic was a gigantic magnifying glass on the necessary improvement of psychological care, which in its online version increased by 500% after Covid-19. Congost has been using videoconferencing as another tool for his practice for two decades. "It is a great ally," he acknowledges, "and in any case it helps us more than it harms us" because "we can be there where we are needed" quickly. "Within five minutes you forget there's a screen in the middle because the emotional connection you create is exactly the same." For her, the crucial thing is that the professional "listens" and "understands". And that is not changed by the virtual space of ones and zeros that are in between. Of course, "as social beings," he points out, "we need to cover needs for love and connection." And that saucer of the scale is integrated by the direct, human treatment.

Like Silvia Congost, other people have left traces of what they have learned throughout their lives in Buscando Vocaciones, the project with which Universidad Europea seeks to inspire young people who are about to start their university stage, as well as all those who need a change in their professional training.

Different experts in the analysis of the human mind left their testimony beforehand. This is the case of Patricia Ramírez, who was also channeled in her career by a high school teacher and who has made her profession a constant search for happiness.

A hard personal experience was also fundamental in the career of Marc Sellarés, a psychologist specialized in the sports field who is convinced that "mental strength is the addition that makes the difference" in a competition and in life.

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