What’s stopping you?
What’s stopping you?

Does the thought of sitting in a room sharing your problems, concerns and inner most thoughts send fear right through you?

‘How can the Counsellor have any idea of what I am going through?’

‘It’s not about my past, childhood or any trauma, I didn’t have a trauma- I don’t want to invent something to make the fee worthwhile.’

I just really need some strategies to cope; I don’t want to dredge through my emotions. I’m just not an emotional person.’

Are these some of the things that crop up for you when you think about counselling? You wouldn’t be alone. I’ve looked at a cross section of studies in the last 7 days and found that these are common views.

What happens if you have counselling with me:

  1. Counselling doesn’t have to be about the past- it can be about your present and future too. You decide what to tell me and we work with that. I may notice other things in your story and I’ll raise them as and when they crop up; you can decide to address it or not. It’s about your path and you have the control in the room about what gets discussed.
  2. Counselling can be used to acquire new skills; yes, I may need some background on the why, but it’s more about how you adapt to the skills and implement them in your day to day life. It can be trial and error until we find the right way for you but that can assist with growth and empowering you to have a voice about offering feedback on the skills you are trying to learn. If you learn better through interaction, we can mimic the skills together, if you learn better solo, then take a task home with you.
  3. If you have concerns about opening up and maybe feel some fear about that, then you can just give me the facts and the basic story and then you can decide if you need to tell me more or if you want to tell me more. The more you offer, the more you’ll get out of therapy, but again, the choice is yours to make.
  4. If you struggle with choice and prefer structure then I can offer structured sessions so that you know what is coming and we can keep the aspects formulaic if that is what you prefer.
  5. If the thought of open-ended therapy is frightening and overwhelming then I can offer a single session of therapy and you need never attend again if you don’t feel the need to, without any judgement.
  6. You can stop whenever you want, be it at the first session, 3 sessions in or a few months down the line; I’m not here to keep you in therapy longer than you feel the need to be there.
  7. If the word ‘Counselling’ seems off-putting, invasive and you have your own views clouding what it is all about, then please consider it as the following:
  • personal well-being,
  • reaching your full potential,
  • addressing negative aspects of your life,
  • personal development,
  • helping your mental health,
  • stress busting self-care; and
  • taking control of your life.

Counselling can be about all of these things and if you associate it with them then the traditional view of counselling begins to fall away and seem more positive. If you want to work on your strengths, improve upon weaknesses, learn self-evaluation, self-worth and increase your confidence levels then these are significant and worthwhile reasons to try counselling.

  1. When you walk in the room, I never assume you’ve had trauma or a terrible childhood. I’m there to listen and help you, not make assumptions.
  2. Your experience of life is unique, I won’t assume your experience of e.g., anxiety, is the same experience as the next client to walk through the door. Therefore, I also believe that what works for one, will be different for another and we’ll work hard to find what does work for you.
  3. If you’ve lost who you are, are conflicted by your life roles and are aware that you aren’t traditionally what people expect of your gender or identifying gender then we can also look at purpose, identity and personality. No topic is off limits if you want to feel better about particular aspects.

I hope this re-evaluation of counselling can help you and others consider it in a different light. Yes, it helps those with mental health concerns but it can also help anyone, from any background and walk of life if that person wants to improve their circumstances and wants to make sense of their experiences for a better present and future.

Please hit the contact button if you want to discuss if counselling is for you.

Photo by Tim Collins on Unsplash

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