What is counselling?
Counselling is a process that 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.
Increased stress, competition, fear, professional pressure, managing relationships are common problems that can begin to be understood in the context of psychotherapy/counselling. Some people seek a counsellor when they find that they have come to a point in life where exploring their personal dilemmas alone or with family or friends has not proven to resolve these problems.
A counsellor is not there to sit you 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 counsellor may then look to create a plan of action to either help you reconcile your issues or help you to find ways of coping.
Counselling can be useful for anyone who wants to explore the way they're thinking or feeling further, as well as anyone experiencing a problem or issue they are keen to resolve. People may choose to speak to a counsellor because they feel they cannot speak to their other half/friends/family about such personal issues, or they may simply wish to speak to a professional with an objective viewpoint.
Some common subjects that can be addressed with counselling:
Losing a loved one is a difficult event in anyone's life. The loss can bring up a wide range of emotions including guilt and anger. Some people benefit from speaking openly to a counsellor about their feelings to help ease the process and resolve any remaining issues they may have.
Wherever there is a physical addiction to a substance (like alcohol, tobacco, drugs) or activities (such as watching pornography) - there is likely to be a psychological addiction too. Counselling aims to relieve the psychological addiction by exploring the root cause while helping to develop new ways of thinking.
Counselling can be used to discuss issues within families, friendships and couples. Problems could involve anything from a poor relationship with a parent to an abusive relationship, gettting over a break-up, or difficulties faced with managing children/parenting.
Suffering from a long-term illness such as cancer or dementia can turn anyone's world upside down. Counselling can help sufferers come to terms with their illness while offering emotional support and coping mechanisms.
Feelings of stress, anxiety and low self-esteem are becoming all too common in today's society. Counselling can offer practical advice for overcoming these kinds of issues as well as allowing you the space to vent your frustrations and feelings. Confusion and dilemmas that life brings about can also be explored and resolved in a therapeutic set up.
Dealing with mental health conditions such as depression, anxiety, OCD, Bipolar Disorder can feel incredibly isolating. Counselling looks to explore the roots to such disorders and find ways to overcome/ manage these conditions by empowering the clients with tools so they can lead healthy and productive lives.
Whether you've been involved in an accident or you have been the victim of abuse, the psychological impact of trauma can last years after the event itself. In a counselling session trauma victims are encouraged to explore their feelings regarding the incident and look into how these could be resolved or changed.
Being the victim of any form of abuse, whether it's verbal or physical can lead to issues that may affect you all of your life. Counselling can offer victims the chance to seek help from authorities (if appropriate) as well as addressing the psychological repercussions in a safe environment.