My counseling approach is based on theory proposed by Carl Rogers, called Client-Centered Counseling. The focus of this treatment is on clarifying, understanding and accepting the feelings and experiences that you have about yourself, relationships and your life. Rogers’ theory has been carefully studied. Considerable research evidence has supported his model. In fact, the attitudes he proposed are endorsed by most helping professionals, as they form the basis of establishing a good working relationship between patient and therapist.
What can you expect? Persons who receive Client-Centered Counseling typically go through three stages, as they go through treatment.
Invariably, as my patients experience being listened to, they feel free to explore themselves and their negative feelings. Helping you to explore yourself, by listening and trying to understand, is like being a mirror for you. This stage of counseling helps you look at yourself-how you’d like to be and how you actually are. Guided self-exploration is different than journaling, because the process creates a bond between patient and helper. The bond leads to a feeling of safety and acceptance.
Gradually, the non-judgmental acceptance I try to communicate in the session leads to a better self concept and understanding of others. You come to understand that it is not experience that causes distress, but how we interpret that experience. Self-acceptance is a hard-won and very valuable personality asset. It is realistic self-appraisal, where limitations are recognized and compensated for, and balanced with a healthy valuing of oneself as unique and special. Greater comfort with yourself allows you to be more honest and open with others, instead of withdrawing in isolation. As your self-confidence grows, you start to behave differently with others.
With a greater awareness of yourself comes new-found energy to make changes to improve your life. You may take risks that you never thought possible before. Here is where my role becomes more like a coach. I’ll be encouraging and assisting you to make changes until you can make them on your own.