How Do I Know If I Need A Counselor?
Almost everyone could benefit from counseling at some point in their lives.
If you are reading this you probably could be helped by a counselor. We are usually drawn by our subconscious minds to what we need. The fact that you are thinking about seeing a counselor indicates it is likely that a problem is bothering you, which you have not been able to resolve on your own. Or you may be seeking meaning in your life or a new stage of growth.
Does Counseling Really Work?
Research studies indicate that the average person who receives counseling have fewer problems and symptoms, and the more therapy they receive the greater their improvement.
Why Can't I Simply Talk to a Spouse, Partner, or Friend?
You can, but often it is more helpful to talk to someone objective. Loved ones who are involved with us emotionally sometimes cannot see our problems clearly, and since our problems usually take time and sustained work to resolve, Friends and family who have their own problems may become burned out listening over a prolonged period of time to our problems. Loved ones expect reciprocity, while professionals do not expect any emotional rewards or personal interaction; good therapists maintain a healthy objectivity and are totally present for you, concentrating on your needs.
What Happens During Counseling?
Every counseling session is unique and caters to each individual and their specific goals. It is standard for counselors to discuss the primary issues and concerns in your life during counseling sessions. It is common to schedule a series of weekly sessions, where each session lasts around fifty minutes. Counseling can be short-term, focusing on a specific issue, or longer- term, addressing more complex issues or ongoing personal growth. There may be times when you are asked to take certain actions outside of the counseling sessions, such as reading a relevant book or keeping records to track certain behaviors. it is important to process what has been discussed and integrate it into your life between sessions. For counseling to be most effective you must be an active participant, both during and between the sessions. People seeking counseling are willing to take responsibility for their actions, work towards self-change and create greater awareness in their lives. Here are some things you can expect out of counseling.
Compassion, respect and understanding
Perspectives to illuminate persistent patterns and negative feelings
Real strategies for enacting positive change
Effective and proven techniques along with practical guidance
Is Counseling Confidential?
In general, the law protects the confidentiality of all communications between a client and psychotherapist.
No information is disclosed without prior written permission from the client. However, there are some exceptions required by the law to this rule.
1. If the client discloses suspected abuse of a child, dependent adult, or elder person. The counselor is required to report this to the appropriate authorities immediately.
2. If a client discloses they are thinking of harming themselves or someone else. The counselor is required to notify the police.
3. If the counselor receives a subpoena to provide client records or to testify in court.