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Basic Counselling Skills

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1 Basic Counselling Skills
WEEK 6 Basic Counselling Skills

2 Basic Counselling Skills
Attending Behaviour Closed and Open – ended Questions Paraphrase Summary Reflection

3 Attending Behaviour Orienting oneself physically and psychologically
Encourages the other person to talk Lets the client know you’re listening Conveys empathy

4 What does attending behaviour look like?
SHOVELER S: Face the other Squarely H: Head Nods O: Adopt an Open Posture V: Verbal Following E: Speech patterns & Volume L: Lean toward the other E: Make Eye Contact R: Be relatively relaxed

5 Pairs Exercise In pairs practice telling each other about your week for 2 minutes – how many attending skills can you apply?

6 Open – Ended Questions Questions that clients cannot easily answer with ‘Yes’, ‘No’ or one or two word responses ‘What brings you here today?’ ‘How would you describe your health?’ ‘How did you feel when that happened?’ ‘What did you do when that happened?’ ‘What are your reasons for saying that?’

7 Purposes of Open-Ended Questions
To begin an interview To encourage client elaboration To elicit specific examples To motivate clients to communicate

8 Pairs Exercise In pairs 1 ask the other ‘How would you describe your day?’ See how long you can go until you ask a closed question Swap positions and start again

9 Closed Ended Questions
Questions that the other can easily answer with a ‘Yes’ or ‘No’ or one or two work response ‘Are you going to get the test done?’ ‘Did you drink a lot of water today?’ ‘Do you drink alcohol often?’ ‘Do you exercise?’

10 Purposes of Closed Ended Questions
To obtain specific information To identify parameters of a problem or issue To narrow the topic of discussion To interrupt an overtalkative client

11 Pairs exersise In pairs, 1 student ask the other ‘how was your day?’ discuss for 1 minute using closed ended questions Swap and repeat the exercise.

12 Group discussion How did the Open Ended Questions feel as opposed to the Closed Ended Questions?

13 Closed vs Open Ended Questions
Are you nervous? How do you feel? Are you worried this isn’t quick fix? What do you think you might do if this is a long term issue? Is your stress levels high? How would you describe your stress?

14 Paraphrasing The counsellor rephrases the content of the clients message Example: Client: ‘I know it doesn’t help my depression to sit around or stay in bed all day’ Counsellor: ‘It sounds like you know you should avoid staying in bed or sitting around all day to help your depression’

15 Purposes of Paraphrasing
To convey that you are understanding him/her Help the client by simplifying, focussing and crystallising what they said May encourage clients to elaborate Provide a check on level of accuracy of your understanding or perceptions

16 When to use it When you have a hypothesis about what’s going on with the client When the client is in a decision making conflict When the client has presented a lot of information and you feel confused.

17 Steps in Paraphrasing 1. Recall the message and restate it to yourself covertly 2. Identify the content part of the message 3. Select an appropriate beginning Ie ‘it sounds like’ ‘so you think’ ‘I hear you saying’ ‘would I be right in hearing that’ 4. Translate the key content into your own words 5. Confirm the paraphrase with the client

18 Pairs Excercise 1 to discuss a recent dilemma about their day
1 to paraphrase Swap and repeat the exercise

19 Reflection A verbal response to a client emotion Example;
Client: ‘So many things are going on right now; another hectic semester has started, my dog is sick, my mum is too. I find myself running around trying to take care of everything. I’m not sure I’ve got the energy to take care of me as well’ Counsellor: ‘You’re felling pretty overwhelmed by all the things going on right now’

20 Purpose of a Reflection
Helps clients: Feel understood Express more feelings Manage feelings Discriminate among various feelings

21 Steps in a Reflection 1. Listen closely and observe behaviour
- watch non verbal behaviour - verbally reflect the feelings back to the client 2. Identify the feeling category 3. Identify the intensity 4. Mark the feeling and the intensity or a word Feed back to the client Add content using the form ‘you feel ______, because______’ Check for accuracy.

22 Purposes of a Summary To tie together multiple elements of client messages To identify a common theme or pattern To interrupt excessive rambling To start a session To end a session To pace a session To review progress To serve as a transition when changing topics

23 Steps in a summary 1. Recall key content and affect messages
2. Identify patterns or themes 3. Use appropriate sentence stem and verbalise the summarisation response Ie ‘I get the sense...’ ‘the picture I’m getting’ ‘overall it seems’ 4. Summarise 5. Assess the effectiveness of your summarisation

24 Group Exercise To create a summary of your pairs day from all the information you have gathered in this session

25 Self-Disclosure Self-Disclosure falls under the notion of genuineness in Client Centered counseling, and can be a bit of a tricky area. Too much self-revelation and the client may lose respect for you; not enough and the client may think you are not a fellow human and cannot relate to their situation.

26 Self Disclosure Guidelines
Some good general guidelines about self disclosure: 1. First impressions are lasting impressions. What you wear and what your office looks like speak volumes about you. Try to find a balance. If you are eccentric, tone it down; if you are a minimalist, soften things with a plant and a picture. 2. Generally speaking, in the first session it is best not to reveal personal information about yourself. You don’t want the client to dislike you because of a non-essential disclosure. 3. Less is best. The session is about the client. She or he is not there to hear about you and your challenges, or to discuss the things you’d like to talk about. 4. If you do share an incident in your own life, make sure it’s one that had a positive resolution.

27 Notetaking is the practice of writing down pieces of information, often in an shorthand and messy manner. The listener needs to be discreet and not disturb the flow of thought, speech or body language of the speaker. Do not allow note taking to break genuine and consistent eye contact

28 Client Centred counsellors would not say they use techniques – rather they have an approach of being empathetic, accepting and truly “there” for the client. Having said that the following skills are central: • Active and empathic listening • Reflection of content and feelings • Genuineness which may include appropriate self-disclosure by counsellor

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