What is Counseling?

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Counseling is a BIG STEP and will change a person’s life! Counseling helps individuals towards addressing sensitive issues in life that are causing emotional distress. Counseling allows people to discuss their problems and any difficult feelings they encounter in a safe, confidential environment. The term can mean different things to different people, but in general it is a process people seek when they want to change something in their lives or simply explore their thoughts and feelings in more depth.

Parents may seek counseling for their children and teenagers as well as for themselves. Parents often don’t know how to handle certain behavioral issues and desire to to be educated so they can “effectively” address the problem.. Many want “coping” strategies to deal with various life issues. Many parents make their kids go to counseling. On the contrary, I explain to the child/teen what counseling is and give them the option if they want to come or not. If they are forced to see me, there will be little to no benefit in therapy. 

A counselor is not there to sit down and tell you what to do – instead they will encourage you to talk about what’s bothering you in order to uncover any root causes and identify your specific ways of thinking. The counselor will develop a plan of action with goals to help you make changes in behaviors and create the life so desired.

Counseling does not come in a cookie-cutter format and I tailor each session to the individual. There is flexibility within this type of therapy that allows for a variety of counselling formats, including:

  • Face-to-face – This is when you make an appointment with a counselor to see them in person, usually at their practice. Face-to-face sessions are one of the more popular therapy formats because they provide an opportunity for you to react to any emotions that arise there and then.
  • Individual or group – You may choose to see a counselor by yourself, or if you prefer you could join a counseling group with people experiencing similar issues. Going to a group counseling session can be helpful if you want to discuss your issues with people who are going through similar problems and you may even gain yourself a support network. Alternatively, you may wish to see a counselor alone to preserve your privacy and concentrate on your own feelings.
  • Telephone counseling – For some, telephone counseling offers a helpful alternative to face-to-face counseling. This involves talking to your counselor over the phone instead of in person. This form of counseling can be particularly useful for those too busy to attend face-to-face sessions, and can be carried out in the comfort of your own home. This format also tends to be more flexible and can potentially reduce waiting list times.
  • Online counseling – Some people prefer  to utilize technology instead (time constraints, travel distance, etc.). This form of counseling allows you to take the time to think through what you wish to discuss. Online counseling also offers you the chance to protect your anonymity (HIPPA Compliant).