By communicating a defined set of objectives, with milestones along the way, you’re helping your client feel hopeful their issues can come to resolution.
You practice unconditional positive regard in your therapy.
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You must express understanding, but not in the sense that you agree with irrational behaviors or thoughts. Counseling requires a great deal of listening—it’s how therapy works: they talk, you listen.
It’s your job to stay focused and give each patient the full attention they need, and you need, in order to gain insight to make an accurate assessment, and ultimately develop a suitable therapy plan. After you’ve listened to your client share their story, and taken good notes, the next step is to establish clear objectives, based on the specific issues and needs of your client.
If your patient feels you are judging them in a negative manner based on what they have shared and revealed, the opposite effect will ensue. A good counselor will prepare for each session by reviewing notes from previous sessions and developing a strategy, based on research and proven counseling practices, for each patient’s goals.
They’ll be able to keep their emotions in check, make better choices, and be hopeful about the future.
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It’s widely said that empathy is the key emotion one must possess to make a good counselor.
An abundance of sensitive emotions will be brought forward during the counseling process, and it’s the counselor’s job to help their clients feel understood and respected.
If you feel inadequate about addressing a patient’s issue, seek consultation from a colleague, or refer your patient to a counselor more qualified to counsel them. Always obtain the patient’s informed consent before administering treatments and therapies.