Counselling is the voluntary relationship between the one seeking treatment (client) and the one who treats (the counsellor). The purpose is to help the client overcome emotional problems.
The main goals of which are:
- To lessen emotional pressure
- Change the thinking pattern
- Increase self-awareness
- Improving interpersonal as well as intrapersonal relations
Though seeking emotional counselling is appreciable, a few things to keep in mind are as the following:
From the client’s point of view:
- Being open-minded
Obviously, there are preconceived notions with individuals. But the client needs to keep in mind that the counsellor will not judge them in any way.
- Overcoming hesitation with the counsellor
It is said that slow and steady wins the race. That is what the client needs to keep in mind. Trust the counsellor and the process. Slowly open up about your problems and listen to what the counsellor has to say and apply it to your life.
- Feeling secure in your environment
The feeling of being secure, is one of great calmness. Hence whenever taking the session, be comfortable with yourself, in your own skin. In general, too, feel comfortable with your surroundings. It really helps feeling like you belong and all is right.
- Don’t hide anything from the counsellor, be transparent!
Whenever you are going through complex emotions or feel that a certain situation is too embarrassing to talk about, do not hide this from the counsellor. Being transparent is one of the main things of emotional counselling. Only when the counsellor knows what you are feeling, they can help you.
- Do not skip sessions; talk through your emotions.
Sometimes we do not feel like attending sessions or just interacting at all. Even then, it is good to sit for the sessions. It might cheer you up or just having company is nice. Talking when do not feel like, brings out the underlying emotions and helps us.
From the counsellor’s point of view:
- Create a non-judgmental environment
It is of vital importance that the counsellor ensures that the environment between themselves and the client is what can be deemed as a ‘safe space’. In this manner the client will be able to get rid of any biases they hold, making the sessions proceed in a smooth manner.
- Always ask questions
When the client is not up to it, we need to keep asking questions to keep the momentum of the conversation going on. As mentioned earlier, underlying emotions are spoken about rarely and that is what we need to work with. Hence, always asking questions contributes to the process.
- Make the person feel comfortable.
To get the individual to open up and converse with ease, it is imperative for us to make the client feel comfortable. Never directly get into your sessions. Always start with small talk like how are they and how was their day etc. Once they are settled in, begin with the session.
- Never give advice (only guide them through the process)
One of the main goals of counselling is to improve intrapersonal communication. If we provide them with the solution to the problem/advice. Also, it is better when the client themselves come to the conclusion to what is the solution (as it includes all the factors they need to consider, and at then end of the day they know what’s best for them.)
- Providing unconditional positive regard and Empathy
Unconditional positive regard is always having a positive reaction to whatever the client has done or confessed to you. You are not supposed to let your personal feelings or bias affect your headspace towards the client.
Empathy is feeling what the others feel. The client looks for understanding and that is what empathy shows.
Keeping all this in mind will lead to positive outcomes of counselling sessions – Making online emotional counselling sessions effective and simple!