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Taking Care of Yourself as a Counsellor

Part of the Counselling Skills For Dummies Cheat Sheet

When faced with a tricky situation whilst using your counselling skills, refer to the helpful tips below. It is very important to remember to take:

  • A deep breath.

  • Your time. Pauses and silences are always shorter than you think.

  • A different tack from questions. Questions give you the agenda and responsibility – try giving the agenda and responsibility back to the help-seeker.

  • Note of emotion words and reflect them back with more weight.

  • Note of feelings, thinking, and behaviour and summarise them.

  • Courage to be honest (as long as it’s in the help-seeker’s best interest). Admit you don’t know what to do, don’t know what to say, feel muddled, and so on.

  • Summaries seriously. Don’t underestimate the usefulness of summarising.

  • Time to consult others and to reflect on the situation.

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