Counselling is a teaching-learning process for the client. It is a relationship between a professionally trained competent counsellor and the individual who wants to learn about himself. Various goals for counselling have been established over the years. This range is spread over from very general to highly specific goals.
The purpose of individual counselling Tyler (1969) describes, is “to facilitate wise choice of the sort on which the person’s later development depends” Counselling aims at behaviour change. Rogers (1961) comments that as a result of counselling the client will become more self-directing, less rigid, more open to the evidence of his senses, better organized, more familiar to the idea which he has chosen for himself. If we analyse different goals set by different experts, we feel that three goals are common for clients as given below. These are actually clients ‘goals.
1. Client self-disclosure
2. Client self-understanding
3 Client behaviour change
Goals of counselling:
- Self-Disclosure Marital Satisfaction
- Self-Understanding Job Satisfaction
- Self-Acceptance Academic Success
- Openness to Criticism College Choice
Types of individual Counselling:
There are four general types of individual counselling.
- Crisis counselling.
- Facilitative counselling.
- Preventive counselling.
- Developmental counselling.
Due to complexity of behaviour usually more than one type of counselling is used. Moreover it is very difficult to distinguish between counselling and psychotherapy. Both focus on client’s growth. The quality of counselling largely depends upon the quality of relationship that exists between client and counsellor. It is the counselling climate which determines the stay of clientele around counselling. Carl Roger (1961) asks ten questions related to counselling relationship.
- Can I be in some way that will be perceived by the other person as dependable or consistent in some deep sense?
- Can I be expressive enough as a person that I am, will it be communicated
- Can I let myself experience positive attitudes towards this person attitudes of warmth, caring, liking, interest and respect?
- Can I be strong enough to be separated from the other? Can I be a sturdy respecter of my own needs as well as his?
- Can I be secure enough within myself to permit him his separations?
- Can I let myself enter fully into the world of his feelings and personal meanings and see these as he does?
- Can I be acceptant of each facet of the other person which he presents to me?
- Can I act with sufficient sensitivity in the relationship that my behaviours will
not be perceived as a threat?
- Can I free him from the threat of internal evaluation?
- Can I meet the other individual as a process of becoming, or will be bound by his post and by my post.
Empathy is putting oneself into someone’s ‘shoes. Pietrofesa et al (1980) define empathy as the ability to understand the feelings, attitudes, and values of another person. Counselling responses generate greater insight into the client and about his problems. Along with empathy positive regard is also provided by the counsellor. It is counsellor’s philosophy of counselling. Carl Roger introduced this concept as ‘ unconditioned in 1967.
Stefflere and Grant (1972,) have listed the basis on which various theories have been developed. They are:
1. assumptions regarding the nature of man
2. beliefs regarding learning theory and changes in behaviour
3. a commitment to certain goals of counselling
4 a definition of role of the counselee.
Theories of individual counselling:
Individual counselling theories can broadly be divided into psychoanalytic approaches, affective approaches and behavioural approaches. According to Gladding (1988,), among psychoanalytic approaches of individual counselling, Classical psychoanalysis and Adlerian theories are more important. Person-centered counselling, Existential Counselling and Gestalt theory are important among the theories of affective approaches. In cognitive approaches Rational-Emotive therapy, and Transactional Analysis are important while in behavioural approaches reality therapy and behavioural counselling are of significance.
Process of individual counselling:
The process of counselling can be seen as two dimensional i.e. process from counsellor’s technical, skill oriented point of view and change process within the client. In the process of client change Pietrofesa et-al (1980,) indicates a positive cycle of growth as follows:
- The client gains a more positive view of self.
- With a more positive view of self there is greater acceptance and openness of the client to others and the environment.
- Client is in a better position to assess accurately his or her strengths, weaknesses and potentials
- As a result of a more accurate self assessment, the client is better able to
establish realistic goals, aspirations, and plans.
- More realistic goals lead to the greater likelihood that the client will achieve those goals.
This cycle continues, as the goals are achieved i.e. more positive view of self is developed Now for a deeper understanding, you may need more study of the topic. Shertzer B. and Fundamentals of Guidance. Stone S. C. (1976)
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