Research on the seeks and purposes of counselling

Counselling is an interactive learning process contracted between your counsellor and the client. The overall goal is to provide the customer with the possibility to work in personal identified ways, towards moving into as pleasing and resourceful ways as individuals as members of the broader contemporary society [Hough 1998].

Clients need to feel safe and secure to allow them to explore and develop an understanding to their issues and concerns. For the customers to explore and resolve their problems with the counsellor a strong therapeutic alliance predicated on trust, empathy, congruence and unconditional positive regard needs to be founded. The counselling environment needs to be comfortable and well suited to a variety of consumer types so the customer can feel safe. Making a therapeutic contract, setting up goals and goals, speaking about confidentiality issues can help your client feel safe. This essay will discuss the aims & purposes of counselling in some detail, accompanied by the importance and great things about a safe counselling environment for your client in his or her exploration. Some constraints of the counsellor will be talked about and finally, referral issues will be looked at.

The European Association for counselling [in Hough 1998] identifies counselling and its aims and purposes in the following way

'Counselling can be an interactive learning process contracted between your counsellor and the client, be they individuals, young families, groups or corporations, which deal with in a alternative way, social, social economic and mental issues. Counselling may be concerned with responding to and resolving specific problems, making decisions, dealing with crisis, improving connections, developmental issues, promoting and expanding personal awareness, working with feelings, thoughts, perceptions and internal or external conflict. The entire target is to provide clients with the opportunities to work in self identified ways, towards moving into as pleasing and resourceful ways as individuals so that as participants of the broader society'

Further detailed goals and purposes of counselling as defined by McLeod [2003] are

Insight, relating with others, personal awareness, self approval, do it yourself actualization, enlightenment, problem fixing, subconscious education, acquisition of public skills, cognitive and systematic change, empowerment, restitution, Generativity and public action.

Insight refers the acquisition of a knowledge of the roots and development of mental difficulties, resulting in an elevated capacity to take rational control over feelings and actions. Relating with others means becoming better able to form and maintain meaningful and gratifying relationships with other people: for example, within the family or work place. Self-awareness allows a person to become more aware of thoughts and feelings that were blocked off or refused, or developing a more accurate sense of how self is recognized by others. Self-acceptance is very important to the introduction of a good attitude towards self, proclaimed by an capacity to acknowledge areas of experience that were the main topic of self-criticism and rejection. Self-actualization or individuation, a center impetus of the person centred theory allows the client to move in the direction of fulfilling potential or obtaining an integration of previously conflicting parts of self Enlightenment is helpful in assisting your client to reach at an increased state of spiritual awakening. Problem-solving indicates finding a remedy to a particular problem that the client was not able to resolve alone. Mental health education will enable the client to obtain ideas and techniques with which to comprehend and control behaviour. Acquiring interpersonal skills is related to learning and mastering social and social skills such as maintenance of eye contact, turn-taking in interactions, assertiveness or anger control. Cognitive change is also one of the goals of counselling. Cognitive change refers to the adjustment or substitute of irrational values or maladaptive thought patterns associated with self-destructive behaviour and Behaviour change which is the adjustment or substitution of maladaptive or self damaging patterns of behavior [McLeod 2003]. Person centred counselling targets the client. In person centred counselling, the counsellor does not direct or in any way manipulate the counselling it is focused on empowering your client to find and choose the best way forward

Creating a warm and safe physical environment can be an essential stepping-stone to creating a strong restorative alliance. Watching getting together with, greeting and seating are helpful in helping your client to feel safe. For counselling to be effective, the counsellor needs to work at creating a relationship. That is very important especially in the early stages when your client may be being vulnerable and insecure, and considering that it's usual for the client to meet the counsellor on unfamiliar territory for example the counsellor's consulting room. Striving to keep the room neutral, in other words clear of personal belongings such as literature, ornaments and family photographs, is a positive step that counsellors can take to lessen the equality gap [Sutton & Stewart 2002]. Sutton & Stewart [2002] writes that barriers such as tables should also be prevented, and seats should be homogeneous and placed approximately 3 to 4 feet apart and just a little at an position. Being in direct eye connection with the counsellor can leave some clients being very uncomfortable or humiliated. Sutton & Stewart [2002] mentions other information on the area for example, a little clock needs to be positioned where the counsellor can look into it, and attention should be paid to the lamps, and room temperature. A package of tissues put where the consumer can simply reach them is crucial, and a vase of fresh flowers or a potted seed can add some warmth and colour to the setting, and represent something of your personality. Using the client's authorization, the counsellor may tape the periods which should be create ready to use. However, it ought to be remarked that emotional barriers are more powerful that physical ones. Whether or not all the physical environment are perfect, the client still may not feel at ease if the counsellor and consumer are not in rapport.

Sutton & Stewart [2002] dispute that handling clients by their first name can go a long way towards supporting them feel comfortable and accepted. Launching yourself because of your first name can help breakdown the obstacles of inequality. However, do not believe that because you are feel comfortable being on first name terms that all people are. Ask the client how they want you to address them. The counsellor's opening word should be empathic as well as your posture should show the client that you are ready to pay attention: Some clients who seek counselling have been terribly let down, damage or abused by other folks, and trust may therefore be considered a major concern. Trust is something that has to be received by the counsellor and it could be effort. However, developing the skills of active tuning in; accurate, hypersensitive responding; reflecting emotions; empathy; genuineness; and demonstrating that you will be fully present for your client can help establish a stable foundation of trust. Indeed, a lot more the counsellor invests in the partnership, the stronger the trust and bond grows between client and counsellor. Trusting the counsellor can help your client feel safe and will aid him or her in do it yourself exploration and understanding.

Establishing clear restrictions [the ground rules for counselling] is another important stepping natural stone to building the therapeutic alliance and aiding the client feel safe. Restrictions may include arrangement over might be found like the length of time of counselling, amount of counselling sessions, limitations of confidentiality, appropriate touching, number and period of calls, sending and responding to emails, or approaches for managing episodes of self-harm or suicidal thoughts. The terms on which counselling is being offered should be made clear to clients before counselling commences; These may be decided verbally, or they might be set out in a formal written agreement between counsellor and customer, and signed by both functions. Subsequent revision of the conditions should be arranged in advance of any change. Clear contracting enhances, and shows value for, the client's autonomy [Sutton & Stewart 2002]. A deal helps to ensure the professional characteristics of the relationship and may, as well as the ground rules already mentioned, include

Venue, fees, regularity of sessions, how counselling will be examined, process of referral, if and when necessary, broad details of the counselling romantic relationship, duties and obligations of each get together, information on the counsellor's guidance, goals of counselling, means by which the goals will be performed, the provision and conclusion of 'home work', the environment of boundaries and objectives, the conditions of the healing marriage, provision for renegotiation of deal [Sutton & Stewart 2002].

It is important to end sessions promptly. This helps the client feel safe. Whenever a treatment is nearing a finish, it could be helpful to say something like:

'We have about 10 minutes left of this session. Perhaps it would be beneficial to summarise what we've talked about today. ' It could often prove good for let your consumer summarise what has been discussed during the program. Something similar to, 'What will you take away along from today?' helps your client to summarise. Your shutting sentences have to be clear, and should indicate that it is time to get rid of the program [Sutton & Stewart 2002].

Just as a protected climate is important for your client to explore and discuss his / her issues, a strong therapeutic relationship based on trust, empathy and unconditional positive respect is as important. The counsellor must unconditionally admit the customers as whom they are really for a trusting romance to determine. Empathy and understanding is shown through careful being attentive. Egan [1986] talks about the value of empathic listening and says that 'a helper cannot communicate an understanding of the client's world without phoning that world through empathetic listening. Therefore empathy centres on the type of attending, watching and tuning in'. Rogers defines empathic hearing in the following way

It means stepping into the private perceptual world of the other and becoming carefully at home in it. It involves being sensitive, moment by moment in time, to the changing felt meanings which stream in this other person, to the fear or trend or tenderness or distress or whatever he or she is experiencing. This means temporarily moving into the other's life moving about in it delicately without making judgments' [Rogers p142 in Egan 1986 p88].

Limitations to the counsellor

Counsellors face constraints in their career as well as through the therapeutic process. Sometimes, the practitioner may feel a strong desire to help the person, by listening to their story as well as perhaps looking to help them to come to terms using what has happened. That is a very caring response, but periodically it may not represent the best course of action. If a person has been assaulted in years as a child, the resulting sense of insufficient trust, as well as perhaps self-hatred, may permeate many areas of the individuals life. Conversing through all that may take quite a while, may involve strong thoughts, and takes a lot of persistence and uniformity for the counsellor. Any specialist faced with such a predicament must consider whether they are capable, in terms of that time period they can give, and their self confidence and competence as a counsellor, to go along with their customer on such a journey. Starting on such a journey, and then pulling back, clearly has the potential for hurt. At the same time, ignoring what the client has said about their mistreatment, for concern with 'getting in over my mind' also has the potential for hurt or harm [McLeod 2007]. Another group of issues around counsellor competence arises from what might be described as temporary impairment. For example, a counsellor who has recently experienced the loss of a close relative is improbable to be much help to someone with a bereavement concern. A counsellor who's burnt out, pressured or exhausted is improbable to maintain a good position to offer ongoing help to someone. Being conscious of one's limitations as a counsellor is vital in these relation [McLeod 2007]. Counsellor competence, capacity and experience are plainly some main limitations. A counsellor will learn and experienced in psychodynamic or couple counselling but might not be able to help with a customer suffering from repeated depressive disorder or any other mental health problem, which is why counsellors have to have a set of contact to send the clients as long as they need to.

Referral issues

There are specialist agencies employed in the areas of mental health, marital stress, eating disorders, intimate abuse, and many others. When the counsellor cannot help a particular individual, he may send them on. There could be various known reasons for referring on. It may emerge that someone's problem would be better attended to through few counselling or in group remedy.

It could become clear that your client wants a specific kind of therapy. The counsellor may think of the colleague whose experience and/or orientation strongly fits the needs of your client. The counsellor may believe that a counsellor of the opposite making love, or someone aged, or somebody who can speak another terminology may be more appropriate for your client. For example, the client may have clear signs of an obsessive-compulsive disorder, and the counsellor may recognize that medication and behavior therapy may be befitting your client than psychodynamic counselling. A woman client may notify the counsellor that she actually is being beaten by her partner and the counsellor may suggest that she looks for a refuge. Since some individuals perceive counselling as a kind of befriending; the counsellor may have to refer this type of person to a befriending design. Some individuals, on the other palm, may hesitate of doctors and think that counselling is exactly what they want. The counsellor may have to encourage them smoothly to see a doctor [perhaps helping them to explore their concerns but without endeavoring to substitute for medical attention]. A customer may not be able to find the money for services for very long and the counsellor might not exactly provide a free counselling service [Dryden 2006]. In every of the mentioned circumstances, your client may be referred to an appropriate agency

Being eager and in a position to refer individuals to other sources of help can be an essential competence for any practitioner who's offering counselling. McLeod [2007] mentions some reasons why recommendation would be important

'the customer may be referred if she or he needs additional time than the counsellor can give or more frequent meetings; is mostly looking for practical information and advice, rather than an possibility to speak things through; identifies problems in living that the counsellor believes are beyond his or her capacity to utilize; might gain a whole lot from making use of a specialist company where there are professionals available who've an abundance of knowledge and experience in relation to the kind of problem the individual has explained; is involved with a prior marriage with the counsellor that might be incompatible with the creation of the secure and private counselling space' [McLeod 2007].

When the counsellor is aware of his or her own particular strong emotions in the counselling situation, this might indicate thoughts that the client has difficulty recognizing or interacting with, or the feelings may participate in the counsellor. The counsellor might need to work through his / her own issues and may need to send the client on.

Another reason the client may be known is due to avoiding dual roles and interactions. Dual relationships take place when counsellors presume two [or more] associations concurrently or sequentially with a customer. Dual relationships can be exploitative and do serious injury both to the client and to the professional. For example, becoming psychologically or sexually associated with a current customer is unethical, unprofessional, and unlawful. Forming dual roles and romance is hazardous as there is a potential for misusing power, exploiting your client and impairing objectivity. Therefore if the practising counsellor is in another romance with your client, the counsellor will send the client to some other counsellor [Corey G 2009]

McLeod [2007] also mentions the important aspects of recommendation. The main element steps in the referral process, for a counsellor, are: [1] knowing what alternative resources can be found; [2] engaging the individual in a discussion around the possibility of seeing someone else; and [3] making the recommendation and managing the 'passing over' stage.

This essay has attemptedto discuss some important issues in counselling and psychotherapy. The seeks and purposes of counselling have been reviewed including empathetic hearing and its importance. The counselling environment must be safe for the client to feel safe in discovering and reflecting on his or her personal issues. Not only physical protection is important, psychological and emotional basic safety is also very important. For example, the counsellor must strive to develop a therapeutic relationship with the client predicated on trust, empathy, warmness and support conveying the core conditions. Restrictions to the counsellor or indeed to its process relates to counsellor competence, how much is the counsellor is experienced, emotionally and educationally, to help and assist the client is a major concern. If circumstances arise when the counsellor is not experienced, or the sort of psychotherapy the counsellor offers is not suited for the client the counsellor needs to refer your client to a proper agency.

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