Deciding to take counselling is not always an easy choice, and for some it is a very painful decision to make. You will spend a lot of money and time and not to forget the courage of being open and talking to someone. It is important to make the most of these sessions.
As with many things in life generally what you put in is what you get out, well counselling is similar in terms of how honest and open you can be and how willing you are in helping yourself.
Below are some pointers on how to get the most out of counselling.
Realistic Expectations –
Be realistic, counselling is not a quick fix and can be painful and emotionally draining. It is not always a pleasant experience especially at the beginning but with time it should become easier. Be patient as it takes time to notice a change and when you do, embrace it and accept it. Acknowledge counsellors are not able to give you solutions or answers but rather guide you to move forward.
If you are not working well with the counsellor let them know. It is important to let them know so adjustments can be made if needed and also issues addressed. For counselling to be effective it is vital the relationship between counsellor and client is good. If after exploring everything and you are still not connecting with the counsellor then it may be that particular counsellor is not for you. Everyone blends with certain people better than others in life and counselling is the same.
It is valuable to be honest and open about your issues to the counsellor, remember they are there to listen with judgement so try not to feel embarrassed or shy. The more open you are the better it is to establish directions and coping mechanisms.
By attending regularly the sessions will be more consistent and flow more freely. Try to not miss sessions and if you find yourself missing a lot of sessions ask yourself why, if the counselling is making you feel a certain way and you do not feel comfortable it is important to tell the counsellor. Attending on time ensures you have enough time to cover issues and also gain more out of the session.
Think about it? –
If the counsellor has given you homework or asked you to think about something try to complete it before your next session. After each session reflect on what has been discussed. Allow yourself time to gather your thoughts and emotions. Be prepared for each session, if you can come prepared with your thoughts it will be easier to explore them with time used more effectively, you could jot down how you feel during the week and describe it so when you come for the session it will be easier and clearer for you to address it. If you decide to write it down remember to keep it private.