How To Get The Most Out Of Counselling

Counselling can be a daunting experience, particularly for the first session. It can be helpful to get the most out of it by making some simple preparations.

This can help clients feel at ease as they share personal and sensitive information. A counsellor should be able to listen without judgement and understand the importance of non-verbal cues (posture, eye contact, facial expression etc). They may also use techniques such as reflection and challenge in order to help clients change their internal frame of reference for a problem or past event. For times when I need someone to talk to, consider

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It is often the clients who participate in the homework their therapist asks them to do that make the most progress. This could include writing, drawing, practising healthy coping skills in real life, listing their inspirations, and so on. Counsellors cannot force their clients to take on this work but they will help them find ways that they can do it.

The expectations that a client has about their counselling will also play a role in the amount of progress they make. Clients who have unrealistic or overly negative expectations about their counselling will likely make little progress. For example, a client who enters counselling with the view that their therapist will magically cure them through talking alone and without any effort on their part will be disappointed when this doesn’t happen.

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The best approach is to be open to trying new ideas and skills that the therapist suggests and to treat making progress in counselling like the process of improving at a job or sport- consistent practice and effort leads to improvement.

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