You all know I’m totally down with depth-oriented psychoanalytic therapy.

AND, you all know I’m 100% down with thinking about the ways money and fees are actually communications in treatment that help us get a deeper understanding of our client’s thoughts, beliefs and patterns.

For example, when your client comes into therapy:

🤓 Did she come in, hand you a crisp check, the ink barely dried, before you even have time to say “hello”?

😎 Did he dig around in his pocket at the end of the session, remove a wad of $150 in unwashed bills and toss it haphazardly on the side table as he walked out?

🤷‍♂️ Maybe you see someone who regularly “forgets” to pay altogether?!

I was trained to make meaning of the way clients pay – to use these gestures  to understand the psychological underpinnings of the ways our clients relate to intimacy, dependence, our value, their value – the limitation of time and space itself!

So, you can imagine my skepticism a few years back when a fast-stalking, fresh faced young city slicker came sauntering into my office talking about payment “apps” that processed “credit cards” and all many of new-fangled internetery.


Wanna skip the amazing story and jump straight to your free holiday gift?!

Click HERE and enter the code: z8tbbh

Meeting Mandy, Founder & CEO of Ivy Pay: AKA “2016 Tiffany Was a Nut” 🥜

When Mandy Silverman, founder and CEO of Ivy Pay reached out to me to seek my thoughts about a new credit card processing system that was designed exclusively for therapists and with therapists in mind, I was more than a little nervous. While I loved that folks behind Ivy Pay are dedicated to supporting the therapeutic relationship by removing barriers for clients and burdens for their therapists with Ivy Pay, the HIPAA-secure mobile payments app that is tailor-made just for therapists, I was brought up in the old school psychoanalytic tradition. My supervisors and mentors took check and cash only and squinted their eyes fiercely at the idea of welcoming new technology.

 While I like to consider myself a rebel and a renegade (ahem), I had a hard time stepping into the digital age when it came to my private practice policies. I had handwritten notes, kept my cash and checks locked in a safe – tucked away in envelopes alongside, not one, not two, but THREE different ledgers to track my finances. Yes. It was a tad ridiculous.

 I remember when Mandy first came to my office to learn more about how Ivy Pay could create an app that really worked for therapists. I was excited and nervous to host a big-wig founder and CEO, but I hell if I was going to let go of my tried and true psychoanalytic practices.

When Mandy asked why I was reluctant to even offer my clients a way to pay by credit card, I mumbled something about Bion’s “unthought known” and then proudly pulled out my current system of financial checks and balances, knowing that if she saw how I currently ran things, she would forget this whole high-falutin endeavor.


I remember her and her product designer watching as I fumbled around with my three different notebooks, eagerly explaining that after each session, I would scribble the client’s initials here in this one with their total payment, include their payment again here in my process notes and then added it up again here in my personal notes, just in case I missed it in the first two places.

 Proudly, with sweat dripping down my brow, I looked back up at them to see the approval wash over their faces. They looked back at me with sideways smiles and nodded politely.

 “We can… we can see that it’s important to you.” Mandy said, slowly. Kindly. “I wonder if there’s a way we could, possibly, maybe create something that would help you streamline some of your systems.”

Needless to say, despite my stubborn nature, I couldn’t really make a good argument for why I clung so ferociously to cash and check. So, little by little, over the course of many weeks, I mentioned to my clients that I now had the option to pay by card. 

How I Transitioned from Check & Cash Only to Ivy Pay: A Credit/Debit Card Processing System

First, I offered the card option to clients clients who clearly wanted to use a credit card payment. Folks were relieved to finally have that option. For a while there I was just offering it to them and figured the others who were always remembering their checks preferred to use checks and I’d be destroying the psychoanalytic frame by offering something new. Face Palm.

I eventually got to the point where the millionth bank run of the month started to take away my personal and professional joys and handling all the paper shuffle was way more of a hassle than I originally realized. Without further ado, I finally offered the card option to the last of my check payers. SHOCK AND AWE! They were MORE than happy to make the switch.

Turns out therapists are among the only remaining professionals who are still asking for checks over cards. Surprise! It’s actually pretty inconvenient for our clients to have to maintain checkbooks primarily to write checks for us each week.

Literally, every single one of my clients, without fail, eagerly moved from cash or check to debit or credit, many of them indicating in one way or another that they were glad I had finally moved into the digital age.

🎁Pro-Tip for Beginners: Making the Switch to Credit Card Payments

I have been successfully using Ivy Pay with my clients for several years now. I love that patients love it. They get an easy invitation I send to them at the end of our first visit. From the invitation, it takes them just a moment to HIPAA-securely add their credit, debit, HSA or FSA card. There’s no app for them to have to worry about downloading and installing. Ivy Pay runs their card for the session and I’m paid at time of service.

  • No waiting checks to clear.

  • No awkward stares from clients when I say, “No I don’t take credit cards”

  • Ivy Pay safely and securely stores the client’s card!

The safely stored card is called “Card on File” in the app, so when I see the client the next week, there’s nothing to be done besides my going into the app on my iPhone (they have Ivy Pay for iPhone and Android), and tapping a button to charge the card again. There’s no need for the client to get their card out again, type it in again, or my having to deal with a swipe reader.

BOOM. Life is GOOD.

That’s how it’s DONE.

Why am I sharing all of this?!

Many of you know that I run a very successful online course called Lean In. MAKE BANK.(LIMB) where I help therapists in private practice earn more while continuing to work with the clients they are passionate about serving. And, I hear from so many of you who – like my old self – have all kinds of hangups about working with payment processing systems to streamline your practices.

 Not too long ago, I reached out to Ivy Pay and thanked them for bringing me and my LIMB students into the digital age, as it has really helped my practice become more efficient and, despite my fears, there are still plenty of money-related issues arising that reveal the unconscious process of my clients that don’t require me to make weekly visits to the bank to cash checks. #so1992

 I asked Ivy Pay if I could offer something to MY community – yes, that means YOU – so that you could dabble in the fine art of being in the 21st century when it comes to your businesses practices. And they said YES!*

* This is where you might be saying, “Oh, I get it. You get a KICKBACK, Tiffany. SCAM.MER.” While I LOVE kickbacks and I’ll get them wherever I can (yeehaw!), I didn’t ask for any from Ivy Pay. I am literally doing this as a way to get the name of my fave kickass app out there, while also getting a little sumthin’ sumthin’ for YOU this holiday season.

 While, Ivy Pay does offer $1000 free processing for new users, for this month, because they are AWESOME, they are offering heytiffany peeps $2000 worth of free processing. Literally! Just for US!

Plus, if you take the heytiffany peeps challenge you can earn up to $2000 ADDITIONAL free charges!

 What’s the challenge, you ask?

The 2019 Ivy Pay Challenge

THE CHALLENGE ==> If you’ve been on the fence about trying out a credit card processing system, I am challenging you to try Ivy Pay with all your clients by the end of January 2019. Yup! In the new year full stop.

#gauntlet thrown

So Ivy Pay teamed up to support my challenge to you:

Enroll in the challenge and then use Ivy Pay with as many clients as you have in your practice before the end of January 2019, so you maximize your additional free charges gift.

You can get that right now, today, here – no strings attached, no questions asked. Here are the steps:

Steps to get up to $4000 of free credit card processing charges

Step One: Grab the Ivy Pay app by Dec 31st:

Step Two: Get your $2000 in free processing charges. Go To Settings > Rewards > Add/Redeem Codes. Then enter your “z8tbbh” code > and press Redeem. 

Step Three: Take the “Ivy Pay 2019 Challenge” to get bonus free charges. After you’ve completed #1 and #2, Ivy will send you an email invite to enroll in the challenge and you could earn up to an additional $2000 in bonus free charges for using Ivy Pay in Jan 2019 with all your clients. 

Step Three: MAKE BANK. 

Why am I going through all the trouble to email Ivy Pay and ask for a bonus, spend hours and days writing up this article and then sending you all this info wrapped with a little bow?!

You know I am committed to helping you make bank, level up and serve your clients amazingly and you know I am desperately interested in helping you become even BETTER therapists. I know – if you’re anything like the old Tiffany – you have all kinds of anxieties about trying new things, especially if they cost money.

Let’s be real, when a client gives you cash or check, it’s free.* If you go through a processing system like Stripe, Paypal or IvyPay (after your 2000 buckaroos is done), it costs money.

*but not really “free” due to the time you spend cashing those checks and cash every week, let alone the ethical implications of keeping your clients’ info confidential

 “Tiffany,” you might be asking, toothpick askance. “Why would I take credit or debit cards and pay that hefty 2.9% + 30 cents cost on every fee when I could just get it for FREE?!”



 One of the things that holds our profession back is our money scarcity. We’re so afraid of losing every dime, meanwhile, we’ll leaving so much money on the table via fear-based sliding scales, terrible reimbursement rates and unenforced cancellation policies.

Rather than thinking outside the box (ie. “If a client wants to use a credit or debit, I’ll raise my fees across the board by $5 to cover the cost”), we get all scared and sweaty and cling to our misguided practices while creating half-baked excuses around how we MUST stick with cash because of climate change and Brexit and Y2K!


 Fact is – there are ethical, professional, and financial reasons in favor of moving to credit card processing systems – and I mean Ivy Pay specifically.

Ethical, Professional & Financial Benefits to using Ivy Pay 

Ethical: It’s actually tough to be HIPAA compliant with checks. Checks have your clients’ names AND addresses and you are depositing them into your business bank account as a therapist. All these things are huge, flashing arrows pointing to the fact that your clients are attending therapy due to mental health issues. 

And swiping credit cards with platforms like Square or Paypal? Same thing. It’s still pretty iffy.  Here’s why!

 According to a review by Person Centered Tech, the go-to CE provider for tech and therapy, because, unlike other processors like Paypal and Stripe, Ivy Pay was designed to be HIPAA compliant from the ground up, it gets a top notch review for being HIPAA compliant and they recommend it for excellent practice risk management.

Professional: The truth is, most clients expect to be able to use credit or debit cards when purchasing products or services. I know, I know, in the olden days, it made sense to use cash and check primarily, but those times have changed.

If you’re working with Millennials or older professionals – that means lawyers, doctors, engineers, tech folks, etc – they expect to be able to pay with cards. If you’re insisting that they bring $200 cash money or that they remember to add writing a check to their busy professional lives because you’re not ready to accept credit cards, it doesn’t reflect particularly well on you as a fellow “professional” who they are hiring to help them grow.

Supportive: Increasingly clients have HSA and FSA cards from their employers that they want to use. HSA (health savings) and FSA (flexible spending) accounts are great ways for our clients to invest extra money towards their therapy as a health benefit. By refusing to take cards, you’re making it impossible for some of your clients to actually invest in their mental health in that rare situation that employers are trying to increase their access to care.

Financial – Late Cancellations: When was the last time you scheduled a session with a new client only to have them not show up? You missed that hour AND you didn’t get paid?

OR, you were waiting patiently week after week for a client who late cancelled, but keeps forgetting to bring their check to pay for that session – a check that never came?

Look, these are clinical issues for sure and it’s vital that you’re bringing issues like late payments into the therapeutic setting and taking them up directly – but I want you to get paid while you’re doing it!

Earlier this year, I sent out an email about late cancellations and one therapist wrote me back after doing the math. She discovered that she had missed out on $1,925 in 2017 due to unenforced late cancels. $1925! And I know that number is a lot smaller than it would be for a lot of you if you actually added up the numbers.

With Ivy Pay, it is very straightforward to charge for late and missed sessions. It no longer becomes a painstaking, anxiety-ridden negotiation. You have their card on file with a signed policy. When they miss or late cancel, you charge.

Financial – Low Rates: Ivy Pay offers a card-on-file rate of just 2.75% compared to 2.9% + 30 cents. They only work with therapists and are committed to not stuffing you with the markup that the other guys pass along when it comes to key-in and card-on-file rates.

The Ivy Pay team is made up of folks who personally understand and value the work that we therapists do. So many of them have had their lives personally changed by their own therapists! For this reason, they are dedicated to creating a service that helps us and our clients, without extravagant fees.

Financial – Tele-Sessions: Let’s be real, if you’re doing remote sessions, you need a credit card option! I hear from more and more of you who are increasing your fees substantially by working with folks beyond the small radius of your local town or city.

It can be hard to figure out how to charge premium fees if you’re in a rural area, but one of the out-of-the-box ways you’re doing this is by doing remote sessions. Which means, you need to have an option to charge remotely. The other option is waiting for the check to arrive in the mai. It’s not 1983. USPS isn’t what it used to be.


TL;DR – Just the FACTS, Jack:

Keeping credit card on file: There are a lot of con’s to keeping credit cards on file without a secure processing app. Ivy Pay does this for you.

HIPAA Compliance: We covered this inside and out. Unlike the others, Ivy Pay was designed to be HIPAA compliant from the outset because it was designed for us.

What about Stripe or Paypal?!:  Unlike Stripe and Paypal, which was designed for all consumers with a very transactional nature, Ivy Pay was designed with the therapeutic relationship in mind, so it takes into account the delicate nature of therapy and strives to respect the work we’re doing with our clients at each and every turn. Unlike other processing systems, it’s not just about swiping a card and picking up your latte’. Ivy has built in a system that is about a thoughtful exchange between therapist and client.


So Merrrrry Christmas and ho ho ho, motherfu-SHUT YO MOUTH!

 Limited Time, Bruh: You only get access to this gift through December 31st, so if you’ve been thinking about trying out a credit card processor or dreaming about it or terrified of it, consider this a Christmas Miracle – a gift from the Almighty*, giving you the chance to step into the new world where you can process $2000+ worth of credit card fees without paying a dime.

Get me my moolah! ⇒ Click Here and enter the code

* You might be thinking I’m referring to myself as the Almighty in this reference. Or perhaps I’m referring to Mandy of Ivy Pay. Maybe I’m even referring to JC (pours one out for her homies) himself. Either way, take your gift and be grateful.

2019 Ivy Pay Challenge Next Steps: 

Step One: Grab the Ivy Pay app by Dec 31st:

Step Two: Get your $2000 in free processing charges. Go To Settings > Rewards > Add/Redeem Codes. Then enter your “z8tbbh” code > and press Redeem. 

Step Three: Take the “2019 Ivy Pay Challenge” to get bonus free charges. After you’ve completed #1 and #2, Ivy will send you an email invite to enroll in the challenge and you could earn up to an additional $2000 in bonus free charges for using Ivy Pay in Jan 2019 with all your clients. 

Step Three: MAKE BANK.