Published on November 25, 2012
Guidance and Counseling: Guidance and Counseling 1 COUNSELING: COUNSELING According to the American Counseling Association, counseling is: “The application of mental health, psychological or human development principles, through cognitive, affective, behavioural or systemic interventions, strategies that address wellness, personal growth, or career development, as well as pathology.” GUIDANCE: GUIDANCE “ Guidance is a process of helping people make important choices that affect their lives, such as choosing a preferred lifestyle” (Gladding, 2000, pg. 4). psychotherapy: psychotherapy Traditionally focuses on serious problems associated with intrapsychic, internal, and personal issues and conflicts. It deals with the “recovery of adequacy” (Casey, 1996, p. 175 as quoted in your text). Focus: Focus While the boundaries between counseling, guidance, and psychotherapy are changing and blurring, we are going to focus our efforts on the application of counseling. Factors that Influence Change: Factors that Influence Change The counseling process is influenced by several characteristics that help it become a productive time for the client & counselor. Not all characteristics apply to all situations, but generally, the following help bring about positive results. Structure Setting Client Qualities Counselor Qualities Factors that Influence Change: Factors that Influence Change Structure . The “joint understanding between the counselor & client regarding the characteristics, conditions, procedures, and parameters of counseling” (Day & Sparacio, 1980, p.246). This give form to what the formal process will look like. Many clients come to counseling with no idea what to expect. Counseling moves forward when client and counselor know the boundaries of the relationship and what is expected. Factors that Influence Change: Factors that Influence Change Physical Setting. Counseling can happen anywhere, but the professional generally works in a place that provides - Privacy, Confidentiality, Quiet and Certain comfort S.O.L.E.R.: S.O.L.E.R. When working with a client, you want to send a message that you are listening. This can be done by being attentive both verbally (responding to the client) and nonverbally. SOLER is an acronym which serves to remind us how to listen. PowerPoint Presentation: S: Face the client squarely ; that is, adopt a posture that indicates involvement. O: Adopt an open posture. Sit with both feet on the ground to begin with and with your hands folded, one over the other. L: As you face your client, lean toward him or her. Be aware of their space needs. E: Maintain eye contact. Looking away or down suggests that you are bored or ashamed of what the client is saying. Looking at the person suggests that you are interested and concerned. R: As you incorporate these skills into your attending listening skills, relax . Factors that Influence Change: Client: Factors that Influence Change: Client Readiness or Reluctance or Resistance. Readiness can be thought of as the motivation that the client brings into the session. How motivated are they to work? Their interest Reluctance is generally seen in those clients who are referred for help by a third party and are unmotivated. Resistance is generally seen in those clients who are forced into counseling. They bring a motivation to cling to their issues through various sorts of actions. Factors which influence change: Factors which influence change Client & Counselor Qualities. Counselors generally like to work with clients who are most like them. We are influenced by the physical characteristics of the client. It is important to be aware of how you work with all clients and offer your best work to all clients. Clients, depending on culture, initially like to work with counselors who are perceived as experts, attractive, trustworthy. Some Basic Principles: Some Basic Principles Each client must be accepted as an individual and dealt with as such (the counselor does not necessarily approve of all behavior, but still accepts the client as a person). Counseling is basically a permissive relationship; that is, the individual has permission to say what they please without being reprimanded or judged. Counseling emphasizes thinking with ; not for the individual. All decision-making rests with the client. Some Basic Principles: Some Basic Principles Counseling is centered on the difficulties of the client. Counseling is a learning situation which eventually results in a behavioral change. Effectiveness in counseling depends largely on the readiness of the client to make changes and the therapeutic relationship with the counselor. The counseling relationship is confidential. The Initial Session: The Initial Session There is always an initial session. It is during this time both the client and the counselor are assessing one another to see if the relationship will work. It is here the subject of the subsequent sessions will be discussed and determined. There are several skills which are useful during this phase of counseling. Gathering Information : Gathering Information Types of Questions: Open —allows the client to answer the question in a free-flowing or narrative style. Used when you want more detailed and elaborate answers. Tell me how this is working for you? Closed —this type of question requires only a one or two word response. Usually…Yes or No. Do you enjoy that type of work? Gathering Information: Gathering Information Types of Questions: Probes —a questions which begins with a who, what, where, how, or when. What do you plan to do to complete your project? Requests for Clarification —Asking the client for more information. Help me understand what this relationship is for? Gathering Information & Building the Relationship: Gathering Information & Building the Relationship When you can take the time to build the relationship with the client & gather information, there are other skills which you must possess and develop. In efforts to build the relationship, you would concentrate more on the client’s attitudes and emotions. The skills you need include the following: Gathering Information & Building the Relationship: Gathering Information & Building the Relationship Restatement/Content Paraphrasing . A re-statement of what you heard the client say in slightly different words. Reflection of Feeling . Similar to a re-statement, but you are concentrating more on the emotional aspect & the non-verbal communication. Gathering Information & Building the Relationship: Gathering Information & Building the Relationship Summary of Feelings . A simple summary paraphrase of several feelings which have been verbalized (non-verbal and verbal). Acknowledgement of Non-verbal Behavior . You are noting to the client what you are seeing. You are not interpreting the non-verbal content. A Touchy Subject - Touching: A Touchy Subject - Touching Touching a client is very problematic in today’s society. Touch appropriately is a major concern for counselors. It is a powerful way to communicate caring and empathy. It can also be easily misunderstood, misconstrued, and damaging to the counseling relationship. Some Non-Helpful Behaviors: Some Non-Helpful Behaviors There are several lists of non-helpful behaviors. Most common among them include: Advice Giving Lecturing Excessive Questioning Storytelling Asking “Why?” Asking “How did that make you feel?” A Word About Goals: A Word About Goals Goals within counseling help to set the tone and direction one travel’s with their client. Without goals, the sessions will wander aimlessly. Goal Guidelines: Goal Guidelines Goals are mutually agreed on by the client and counselor. Goals are specific. Goals are relevant to behavior. Goals are achievement & success oriented. Goals are quantifiable & measurable. Goals are behavioral & observable. Goals are understandable & can be re-stated clearly. Perceiving Reality “Perception is Reality”: Perceiving Reality “Perception is Reality” As you move past the initial stage of counseling, you begin to gain an understanding of the client’s world view. How they perceive reality is considered true by the client, and often seen only one way. As you work with a client, you may offer new frames to their pictures of reality (re-framing) and fresh ways to look at things. Important Skills/Tools for the Counselor: Important Skills/Tools for the Counselor There are several important skills which we will cover briefly. Each is considered a “micro-skill” which you will need to develop during the clinical sequence of the counselor training program. Empathy Leading Responding Self Disclosure Immediacy Humor Confrontation Empathy: Empathy You want to build the relationship with the client through all the previously mentioned skills. Yet all these skills will be hindered without the use of empathy. Empathy: Empathy According to Rogers (1961)… This is the ability to enter the client’s phenomenological world, to experience the client’s world as if it were your own without ever losing the ‘as if’ quality. It involves two specific skills: Perception/understanding of what is taking place emotionally. The ability to communicate your understanding of that to your client. Empathy: Empathy According to Martin (1983)… Empathy is communicated understanding of the other person’s intended emotional message. Every word counts in this definition. It is not enough to understand what the person said; you must also hear what they meant to say; the intended message. It is not enough to understand, even deeply; you must communicate your understanding somehow. It is absolutely essential the other person “feel” understood—that your understanding is perceived. Two Forms of Empathy: Two Forms of Empathy Primary Empathy: Responding in such a way that it is apparent to both the client & counselor the counselor has understood the client’s major themes. Advanced Empathy: This takes the relationship one step further. You are exploring themes, issues, meanings, and emotions that are below the surface of what is being shared by the client. Levels of Empathy: Levels of Empathy Throughout your time with a client, you will be using different levels of empathy. As the sessions progress, empathy will deepen as you know more about your client and their story. You also use an appropriate level of empathy for the stage of counseling. Levels of Empathy: Levels of Empathy The verbal & behavioral expressions of the counselor either do not attend to or detract from the verbal & behavioral expressions of the client. Although the counselor responds to the expressed feelings of the client, they do so in a way which subtracts noticeable affect (emotion) from the communications of the client. Levels of Empathy: Levels of Empathy The expressions of the counselor in response to the expressions of the client are essentially interchangeable. The response of the counselor add noticeably to the expressions of the client in a way that expresses feelings a level deeper than the client was able to express. Levels of Empathy: Levels of Empathy The counselor’s responses add significantly to the feeling & meaning of the expressions of the client in a way that accurately expresses feeling levels below what the client is able to express. Moving the Client—Leading : Moving the Client—Leading There are several ways to “lead” the client forward in a session. They include using silence, acceptance, paraphrasing, etc… Be aware of how you lead and where you are going. You are working on the client’s issues, not your issues, or what you think the client should be working on. Moving the Client—Leading : Moving the Client—Leading Restatement of content Reflection of content Reflection of feeling Minimal Encouragers: “I see” or “uh huh” General Encouragers: Direct client talk more on a specific topic, e.g., “Please say some more about…” Encouragement/Support Therapeutic Silence Responding Styles : Responding Styles Counseling is often perceived as just focusing on feelings. This is not true. While counseling helps people work through feelings; how one responds and communicates with others will effect how the counselor responds to the client. Responding Styles: Responding Styles Affective Responding. Focusing on feelings. Behavioral Responses. Focusing on actions and behaviors. Cognitive Response. Focusing on thoughts and cognitions. You will balance these throughout the session with a client. Self-Disclosure: Self-Disclosure Self-disclosure is making oneself known to another person (the client) by revealing personal information. - Johari Window Counselors self-disclosure is only necessary as it relates to the therapeutic process. Too much self-disclosure hinders the counseling process, while not enough, may inhibit the client from forming a bond with the counselor. Immediacy: Immediacy This involves a counselor’s understanding and communicating of what is going on between the counselor and client within the helping relationship. There are 2 types: Relationship immediacy. (Between client & counselor) “Here & Now” immediacy focuses on some particular event in the session. Humor: Humor Humor can have a positive effect on the counseling process when used properly. It must be used with sensitivity and timing. It does not demean and is supportive. A session is not a time to try out a new joke heard at lunch. Confrontation: Confrontation This is not skill at putting the client down for doing something wrong!! This is an invitation to the client to look more closely at behavior that is not working or interfering with growth, change, or healthy functioning. A Challenge… Confrontation: Confrontation Before you confront someone you want to make sure the relationship is strong and able to withstand the challenge of the confrontation. Example: “You have said you want to change this behavior but it seems you keep doing it over and over again. Help me to understand what is going on and how repeating this pattern is helpful to you.” Transference & Counter-transference: Transference & Counter-transference A concept as old as Freud, transference and countertranference are issues that affect all forms of counseling, guidance, & psychotherapy. Transference & Counter-transference: Transference & Counter-transference Transference. This is the client’s projection of past or present feelings, attitudes, or desires onto the counselor. It can be direct or indirect and will cause the client to react to you as they would in the past or present relationship. Transference & Counter-transference: Transference & Counter-transference Counter-transference. This is the counselor’s projected emotional reaction to or behavior towards the client. It can take on many forms, from a desire to please the client, to wanting to develop a social or sexual relationship with the client. When this happens, supervision or counseling for the counselor is called for. Termination of a Session: Termination of a Session There is no great secret to ending sessions. There are some guidelines: Start and end on time. Leave 5 minutes or so for a summary of the session. Introduce the end of the session normally (“Our time is coming to a close.”). Assign homework. Set up next appointment. Termination of the Relationship: Termination of the Relationship Termination is the end of the professional relationship with the client when the session goals have been met. A formal termination serves three functions: Counseling is finished and it is time for the client to face their life challenges. Changes which have taken place have generalized into the normal behavior of the client. The client has matured and thinks and acts more effectively and independently. Timing of Termination: Timing of Termination There is no one answer when termination is to take place. Questions you may wish to ask yourself concerning termination include: Have clients achieved behavioral, cognitive, or affective goals? Can clients concretely show where they have made progress in what they wanted to accomplish? Is the counseling relationship helpful? Has the context of the initial counseling arrangements changed? Resistance to Termination: Resistance to Termination Clients & Counselors may not want counseling to end. In many cases this may be the result of feelings about the loss and grief or insecurities of losing the relationship. For clients, this is something to process. For counselors, this is an issue for supervision. Premature Termination: Premature Termination Client. Many clients may end counseling before all goals are completed. This can be seen by not making appointments, resisting new appointments, etc… It is a good idea to try and schedule a termination/review session with the client so closure may take place. At this time a referral may be in order. Premature Termination: Premature Termination Counselors. At times, counselors have to end counseling prematurely. Whatever the reason for the termination, a summary session is in order and referrals are made, if appropriate, to another counselor. Referrals: Referrals At times, a counselor needs to make a referral. When this is done, specific issues need to be addressed with the client: Reason for the referral. Note specific behaviors or actions which brought the need for a referral. Have the names of several other counselors ready for referral. You cannot follow up with the new counselor to see if the client followed through (Confidentiality issue). Follow-Up: Follow-Up At times, a follow-up may be scheduled for various reasons including evaluation, research, or checking-in with client. Follow-ups need to be scheduled so as to not take the responsibility of change away from the client.