Isn’t it ironic, the more developed we are, the more complex life has become? You’d think that all the amenities, gadgets and gizmos around you would make life simple, sweet and pleasing. Perhaps somewhere along the way, we forgot to relax or overstepped the line. Whatever the reason, the world we live in today is complex, busy and confusing. For the most part, we can take changes in our stride and get on with life. But occasionally we have to deal with an event that throws us off balance. We are stopped in our tracks, and are left clueless about how to deal with it. It could be death, loss of a job, a sudden change or even loneliness. That is when we turn to counseling.
What is Counseling?
Counseling is a wonderful modern day invention. Psychotherapy through counseling provides opportunities for those seeking help to live more satisfying and happy lives. In its current form, counseling is less than 100 years old, but the use of talk for therapy is not new to mankind.
There are times when certain experiences become too big and too uncomfortable for a single person to handle by him or herself. Sometimes, these events are so intense that we cannot or will not discuss them with anyone else. We end up burying the events within the deep folds of our brains, where they sit eating away at our happiness and self confidence.
Although counseling is coupled with psychotherapy for most purposes, there is a good deal of difference between the two. These are overlapping activities with some differences. But both these activities denote a professional relationship between a trained counselor and a client or a group of clients, where psychological theories are applied to help clients overcome their personal problems.
Check out some online counseling websites for further assistance with your personal issues.
How can counseling help?
The human mind is tuned to protect itself and will go to great lengths to hide, avoid and bury. Through counseling the ‘patient’ is able to dig for and unearth valuable clues that lead him to the real problem. Once the problem has been identified, finding a solution becomes easy.
When you simply need a professional ‘ear’ to listen to you and to advice you, you can turn to counseling. A counselor does not label or diagnose you. He does his best to listen to you quietly and works with you to draw inferences that may not be obvious to you. This is the power of counseling.
For most people, one to six counseling sessions are sufficient to make a real difference. Methods of diagnosis and therapy used in counseling sessions include active and attentive listening, the use of drama and art, therapeutic movement and play, and other ways of communicating. The counselor has to show a deep and abiding respect to the client’s autonomy. There is no coercion or ‘push’ against the client’s will.
Counseling and psychotherapy requires tremendous skill and patience on the part of the practitioner.
Listening empathically and responding sensitively is hard work. Clients may disclose powerful emotions and disturbing feelings or fantasies. Counselors need a high degree of self awareness to deal with these feelings.
How often have we heard the saying that man is a social animal? But many people living in the social jungle still feel isolated, depressed and ‘unequipped’. People who live busy and stressful lives go to health spas to pamper and soothe their bodies. Counseling offers the same kind of gentle care to the mind that a health spa provides to the body.