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As was explained in Part 1 the relationship building is essential in the counselling process, this is due to the fact that the therapeutic relationship can be reparative. It can be reparative as the relationship can replicate relationships with others in which the counsellor tunes in with the client’s needs. Here,  the counsellor is fully present within the relationship and allows the individual to develop appropriately by amending the relationship, in a therapeutic setting ,which had previously caused such disturbance to the individual. The counsellor can act as an appropriate role for clients to model on, perhaps this will not be available in the client’s life. However counselling is not simply about the therapeutic relationship between the professional and the client.

 

After the relationship has started to take shape, the counsellor respectively can challenge the client on certain issues which the client keeps presenting – some of which they might not be aware of.  Using the different schools of thought in counselling, the professional utilizes these skills in order to guide the client to what they would like to gain insight on. Once insight is achieved then work is done to alter the specific thought, behaviour or attitude which the client would like to change. This is done by learning different coping mechanisms, amongst other different ways in which one can manage their emotions. Counselling is not always sitting on a chair speaking to the professional, counsellors can use various creative techniques to facilitate the various themes of the sessions. If one thinks that they would prefer more creative ways of expressing themselves then one should inform the counsellor that they would prefer those methods of expressing themselves to be incorporated in their sessions..

 

As a counsellor I have been privileged to witness individual’s growth and self-development when the client is willing and ready to do the work to elicit the changes desired. However I have also experienced clients who for some reason or another the therapeutic relationship would be difficult to form. This is due to the fact that both the counsellor and client are humans –  in which there is a possibility that two people do not connect and that’s okay! At the end of the day counselling is all about two people connecting through the therapeutic relationship, so do not be discouraged. What I urge the reader to take with them is that if the individual feels that it didn’t work out with one counsellor do not lose hope that it will not work with other counsellors. I encourage the reader to seek other counselling professionals in order to find the one professional whom relating to would be very natural for the client in order to engage in the work that counselling requires one to do.

 

 

Karl Grech is a counsellor. He offers counselling to both individuals and couples within Willingness. He can be contacted on karl@willingness.com.mt.