What Is Counselling

counsellor and clientCounselling refers to a profession that evolved in response to the needs of our industrialised modern society. It is a service often sought by people in distress.

The Purpose of counselling is:

  • to help people in crisis by providing a safe, supportive and confidential environment to discuss personal problems.
  • to help people make informed choices when confused or at a point of transition in their lives.
  • to support people who wish to explore, clarify and discover ways of living that create a better quality of life adjusted to their needs and/or their circumstances.

There are 400 different models of counselling which can be divided into 3 different Core Approaches:

  1. The Psychodynamic model: is based on the premises that human behaviour and relationships are shaped by conscious & unconscious influences.
  2. The Cognitive Behavioural model: uses the power of the mind to influence behaviour. It is used for dealing with specific phobias and anxieties. It has been effective for stress-related ailments and depression and works well for compulsive and obsessive behaviour, eating disorders and addictions.
  3. The Humanistic model: is based on personal growth and self development; the client’s creative insights are used to explore and resolve the problematic issue.

What is Holistic Integrative Counselling ?

Holistic counselling involves the person as a whole; it takes into account the body, mind, emotions and Spirit.
Integrative counselling describes any multi-modal approach which combines therapies. It happens when practitioners are more concerned with what works with a client at a given time rather than being bound by the specific methodology of any particular model. Having said that, there is ample evidence that the relationship between the therapist and the client is more important than the approach used.

Applications of Counselling

Individual Therapy
In most cases counselling is initially used by individuals who seek help for a specific problem. They may benefit further from other forms of counselling such as family therapy etc according to the problem they are struggling with.

Family Therapy
Family members can come to therapy together to seek help for a given problem. In such cases the therapist may use the “Systemic” model which helps change patterns of relationships between the members of the family.

Relationship Therapy
enables the parties in a relationship to communicate more effectively and recognise repeating patterns of behaviour. It helps them understand and manage difficulties they are experiencing. The relationship involved may be between members of a family, between work colleagues, neighbours etc. It often involves aspects of mediation.

Couple Therapy
Whether you are married or partners, heterosexual or gay, couple therapy is used to help people recognise and resolve conflicts in their relationship; the problems may be of an emotional, psychological, cultural or sexual nature.

Addiction Therapy and Recovery Programmes
are offered to people who suffer from a continued physical or psychological dependence on a substance or activity despite the negative consequences associated with it. The therapy and recovery programme can help them identify their problem and find steps to recovery, and also help family members cope with the situation.

Eating Disorder therapy and Recovery Programme
Eating disorder is a psychological disorder characterised by abnormal, disturbed and/or obsessive eating habits. The most current forms are bulimia, anorexia nervosa, binge eating, and they can be triggered by stress, anxiety or trauma. Specific forms of therapy and recovery programmes are designed to help and support sufferers of such ailments, and their families.

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