Counselling and Self Awareness
Because of the intimately private counselling work that qualified counsellors and psychotherapists do with clients, it is vitally important that a counselling professional is fully self-aware. Being able to self-reflect enables a counsellor to identify and develop personal awareness, and to remain emotionally detached from the relationship he/she is developing with a client.
Relating to OthersCounsellors will naturally draw their own conclusions about self-awareness. Their work with clients may present many personal challenges, but also an on-going opportunity to assess personal strengths, feelings, thoughts and limitations, as they relate to other people. Understandably a counsellor may also experience a sense of personal familiarity, whilst counselling clients, but must remain emotionally detached at all times.
Relating to clients, in a positive, open manner, encourages the client to disclose in a comfortable, confidential environment and provides the counsellor with the ideal setting in which to communicate in a supportive way. Using their own life experiences, a counsellor can demonstrate empathy, compassion and understanding without becoming personally involved in the counselling process.
Becoming More Self-AwareSelf-awareness is something that grows over a period of time and with exploration. Techniques, to access information about oneself, can be learned, and personal experiences can affect personal thoughts and feelings. A counsellor will experience all of these issues and concerns, and must use the knowledge gained to help their clients overcome their own personal issues.
Throughout a counsellor’s training he/she will be exposed to a series of opportunities that will allow them to question their own beliefs, awareness and values, and how these impact on their personal lives, work and others. It is this self-awareness and self-knowledge that forms the foundation of their counselling career.
A person’s growth and understanding can only be assessed through self-awareness, and it is no different for those working in a therapeutic profession. Being continually open to personal, and career, development will help a counsellor fully understand their values and self.
Dealing With IntimacyCounselling is a very personal, private and confidential process for each individual client. It is also a challenging experience for the counsellor who is supporting the client through the counselling process. Dealing with intimate information, on any level, will make a person feel exposed and a counsellor will experience this also. Maintaining a professional attitude throughout the counselling process will enable the counsellor or psychotherapist to assist the client, to the best of their ability. However, at the end of the counselling relationship a counsellor must be able to close the door on the relationship.
A good counsellor will not also not allow their own beliefs, attitudes and values to compromise the client-counsellor relationship in any way.