Attitudes to Counselling
1st October, 20120 Comments
Years ago, counselling had a lot of stigma attached to it. The older generation were told to ‘pull yourself together’, ‘get on with it’; showing weakness and needing help for emotional issues was considered a bad thing.
It’s still clear to see that sometimes seeking counselling is seen as a negative thing, that life issues should be easy to deal with - as the critics would state, they have done, so why can other people not do so?
Whilst there is less stigma, it is still there and often people will have opinions but not necessarily voice them.
I guess the reason for writing this article is to state that accepting that you're struggling in life and need some help is a strength not a weakness. As you're reading this, you probably know people who are struggling but will not accept it, and the last thing they would accept is their need for counselling.
Counselling is for people who realise that some guidance for your struggles is necessary. Counselling is a way in which you can examine your issues and have greater understanding by the support of a counsellor. It often easy to get caught in the trap of self analysis, which sometimes can be of some use - however, the individual can only see from their internal perspective and this is often very subjective, with not all perspectives viewable, whilst a counsellor can help you see from an external perspective(s) and sometimes bring some objectivity to the analysis.
It may be that you're looking for support for a specific problem or set of problems you're struggling with, or bigger issues which have some grounding in your past. It may be you're looking to answer the big life questions; ‘who are you?’, ‘why are you here’, ‘where have you been? and 'where are you heading?’
In answer to the stigma and the critics, you are ‘pulling yourself together’ and ‘getting on with it’ by accepting that you need a little support on your life journey - someone who can help you read your internal map. It is not weakness but strength to accept that sometimes you need a little support. If you broke your leg you would go to the hospital; if you had a physical illness you would see your GP. So, if you're struggling knowing which way to go, surely it makes perfect sense to go and see a counsellor.
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Nikki Shephard (FdSc, MBACP)October 19th, 2016
Andrea Harrn Psychotherapist and Author of The Mood CardsMay 13th, 2011
Imi Lo: Psychotherapist, Art Therapist, Supervisor (MMH,UKCP,HCPC,MBPsS)March 29th, 2015
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