Tips to Get the Most from Counselling
This is your process – the success of your experience rests on your willingness to view yourself as responsible for your life. Do not expect the counsellor to “fix” you. Counselling is designed to be an empowering process that increases your self-awareness. Ultimately, your self-responsibility and motivation for change will create results.
Einstein said it best – “We cannot solve a problem by using same kind of thinking that we used when we created the problem”. Curiosity, rather than a fixed mental perspective, allows solutions and breakthroughs.
Getting curious is an intentional activity – next time you feel stuck, intentionally try to shift to a curious state. It may take practice at first to resist trying to fix or find solution.
Open or closed – we frequently move through these two states in the counselling process. Gain awareness of when you are feeling open and receptive, or when you are feeling closed and defensive. Uncertainty evokes a closed state, so become aware and challenge yourself to shift to openness. Be honest with yourself and your counsellor about your resistance – big rewards await when we are willing to be open with others and ourselves.
If nothing changes – nothing changes! So many of us have learned to be cautious and distrusting. Learning how to trust what is safe yet slightly outside of our comfort zone is the beginning of change. Counselling is a safe place to explore friendly change – yet it may require the risk of moving into new or unknown ways of looking at things.
We live in a high-speed world, where sometimes patience with our human efforts is in short supply. Counselling is a process, requiring that we persist.
Many of the issues that lead us to feeling stuck and dissatisfied, took many years to engrain. The shift that we want often happens quite spontaneously, when patience and persistence is applied. Don’t sabotage yourself through impatience.
Expect to Regress
Counselling tends to prompt positive changes. Sometimes, because it feels unfamiliar that things begin going smoothly in an area that we may have been stuck for a long time, we become fearful and ironically regress.
Progress, followed by backsliding (regression) is normal – it means real and lasting change is taking root. Regression is our natural way of building trust with this new positive experience.
Listen to your Body
The body responds quicker than our thoughts – learn to listen to this wise resource to know what you are feeling. Many of us give little attention to our physical response, and make decisions that are not in our best interest.
Listening to your body will exponentially move the counselling process further, faster. Begin by noticing what your breathing feels like in various situations – it is the best starting point.