Philosophy of Counselling
I use an integrative approach to counselling and psychotherapy. This derives from my academic training and my own world view. I have studied other traditional psychoanalytic theories, but always return to what I feel is right, an integrative approach.
My integrative/existential training has provided the background I needed for my own personal growth and self-development. I also integrate aspects of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy and Solutions Focused applications.
From an existential perspective I focus on freedom of choice in shaping the client’s life. I find it more important to ask how or what the client is experiencing as opposed to why questions.
In contrast to this I intend to integrate Cognitive Behavioural Therapy which I believe to be an extremely important development for the extension of existential thought and practice.
The existential approach significantly underlies my work.
I believe that clients are unique individuals with their own particular strengths and possibilities.
I do not judge what is right for my client nor do I wish to take responsibility. At the same time, I see that I have a responsibility to my client. I firmly believe that if a client is treated with warmth and respect, that person will value him or herself and become confident and therefore more able to function effectively. Underlying strength will begin to re-assert its self in useful positive choices allowing the client to be able to find inner strength and establish her or himself in the world once again.
I never impose my values, opinions and expectations onto my clients.
I view myself and others as a unique individual, and because of that understanding I have come to see others for what they are. That is a unique individual with their own world view, hierarchies and belief systems.
I try to be informed about the historical background, traditions and values of my client. In areas where I feel that I am lacking in certain knowledge I will seek resources to assist me in this and I regularly monitor my functioning through consultation and supervision.
I consider it vital that I maintain an open mind to the presence of gender, racial, cultural and socio-economic diversity and to be aware of unintentional bias that could greatly influence the counselling process.