Can counselling work?
For many years, I struggled with the idea that counselling could be something that would be of value to me. For a large part of my working life, I was working in behavioural consultancy, and the idea that real change can happen to an individual was one that really challenged my beliefs. I held the opinion that, in a behavioural sense, you could predict a person’s future by looking at their past and noticing patterns, therefore leading to a realisation that you could work out how someone would always respond, or behave. You could then train someone to respond differently, but it would likely be temporary as they would soon return to their natural behaviours.
I feel now that I took this stance as a be-all-and-end-all approach, and it wasn’t until feeling trapped in a sense of my own repeating cycle that I began to look outside and imagine ‘what if?’ Counselling is a great tool to help us look at our past, notice our patterns, and then seek to holistically change, should we wish to do so. I was completely unaware of the judgement I was passing on myself by saying “well that’s just the way I am”, and how I was keeping myself in a cycle of predictability by doing so. I needed to take care of myself.
Coming to counselling I was almost immediately presented with the notion that change can happen, that should I wish to, I can adapt, grow, and respond to life circumstances differently. I found I was given the space and the positive regard by my counsellor that I needed to imagine how life might look if I was to just modify and adapt my behavioural responses.
For me, counselling was a success, it challenged me without being judgemental, and it helped me to give myself permission to live rather than merely exist, in so many facets of my life.
Maybe counselling can work for you too. If you feel stuck in a rut, that you always respond to situations in the same way, and that you would like to see if positive change is possible in your life (it is!) then why not make contact with a counsellor near you to see if they can help.
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