What is counselling? How does it work? Which issues can it address?
You may choose to come to counselling for a variety of reasons, you may have a specific issue you might like to address or a variety of issues, or maybe just a vague feeling that something is not quite right.
However much you are aware of already, counselling is a process of bit by bit uncovering and healing the underlying issues and can address a wide range of common issues like low level anxiety and depression, that can result in a loss of joy in life, as well as more profound issues like panic disorder, clinical depression, phobias, PTSD, bereavement and childhood abuse and neglect ,that can have a crippling effect on life, and eventually lead to an inability to function in life and cause suicidal ideation.
In the picture above you cannot see what lies beneath the surface as the water reflects back what is already visible, in a very similar way, many people are not aware of the range of issues that are impacting on them.
It is important that following a successful assessment session, a client feels ready to make a commitment to at least 6 more sessions to allow for time to build up a relationship with the counsellor before deciding whether counselling is beneficial at this moment. This is vital if the work together is going to reach any depth, which is where the real issues usually are. There is no given length as to how many sessions a client should have and it solely depends on the wish of the client. Some people attend counselling sessions with the same counsellor for just a few sessions others for several years.
Once counselling has commenced, there may be a mixture of feeling deeply relieved that all this confusion and pain is finally being looked at and you are no longer alone and a certain amount of resistance to allowing yourself to feel the more challenging emotions. This can cause some ambiguity in the client and occasionally cause some resistance to continuing the sessions. However, if you can persist in working through this resistance, you will start to experience small as well as big shifts in your life and sense of wellbeing.
Getting to know yourself on a deeper level and becoming more the authentic ‘real’ you is a very liberating and joyous experience even if requires working through the initial build-up of unexpressed and sometimes unprocessed emotion that is blocking your health and happiness.
Counselling sessions are most effective on a weekly basis as this helps to contain the process.