My Counselling Style
My Psychotherapy and Counselling Style
My Psychotherapy and Counselling Style with Indivduals
It can be very difficult for people seeking and experienced counsellor for the first time as there are so many different methods for psychotherapy and counselling and couples counselling - all claiming they are the best and only way! I use the Person Centred approach with indivduals. (see below)
Briefly speaking the Person Centered Approach has proved a very safe and effective method which has been used widely since the 1950s. I do not interpret, judge, or impose my view of what I think you should do. I try to be as understanding, honest and straightforward as I can.
Person Centred Counselling
The person centred approach was developed by the psychologist Dr Carl Rogers (1902 - 1987), who proposed new humanistic ideas for counselling. These moved away from the notion of the psychotherapist and counsellor as an expert/authority figure who knew everything about the client.
As a very experienced counsellor Rogers trusted in people and believed that, if a safe psychological environment existed then all people would naturally move towards understanding and a better fulfilment of their own personal potentials.
The following potentials, he believed, are within all of us:
- sociability: the need to be with other human beings and a desire to know and be known by other people,
- being trusting and trustworthy,
- being curious about the world, and open to experience,
- being creative and compassionate.
The psychological setting which helps us realise these potentials is one created by the psychotherapist and counsellor where we feel free from threat, both physically and psychologically. Rogers said counsellors could create this safe setting with clients and therefore help to bring about change.
Much of Roger's work was in understanding and defining the disciplines and conditions to be followed by the psychotherapist and counsellor as well as the relationship counsellor so that they could create a safe therapeutic relationship with people who came to see them. He said this could be achieved for when they are in a therapeutic relationship with someone who is:
- deeply understanding (Rogers called this "empathic"),
- accepting and absolutely non-judgemental ("unconditional positive regard") and
- genuine and honest ("congruent").
Today there are many experienced counsellor s and relastionship counsellor s working in many different fields of psychotherapy and counselling that use these three guiding principles or "core conditions".
At this level, Person Centred theory for psychotherapy and counselling is simple to describe. But many people agree that, both keeping to these principles in our lives and using these disciplines in indivdual and relastionship counselling can be both exiting and very challenging.
Useful Reading about Psychotherapy and Counselling
On Becoming a Person. Carl Rogers (1961) Published by Constable and Company
A Way of Being. Carl Rogers (1980) Published by Routledge
An Invitation to Client-Centred Psychology. Tony Merry (1995) Published by Whurr
Nicholas Willatt Counselling Services