As a counseling psychologist, I believe in taking a wholesome approach. I prefer not to go with a fixed or unidirectional / theoretical basis. The client and the effectiveness of my counseling, in helping to resolve her problems is more important than any one theory. I believe that ‘life’ is the greatest teacher and I use my own experiential understanding to help my clients, using the best approaches I have learnt and have been trained for.
Some qualities of an effective counselor are given below for information :
Cormier and Cormier, 1998 had expostulated that effective counselors are people who have successfully integrated scientific knowledge and skills into their lives. That is they have achieved a balance of interpersonal and technical competence. Qualities of effective counselors among others are (Foster 1996, Gut 1987):
- Intellectual competence – the desire and ability to learn as well as think fast and creatively
- Energy- the ability to be active in sessions and sustain that activity even when one sees a number of clients in a row
- Ability to listen – the ability to find listening stimulating
- Empathy and understanding – the ability to put oneself in another’s place, even if that person is totally different from you
- Emotional insightfulness –Comfort dealing with wide range of feelings from anger to joy
- Tolerance of intimacy- the ability to sustain emotional closeness
- Comfort with power – the acceptance of power with a certain degree of detachment
- Ability to laugh – the capability of seeing the bittersweet quality of life events and the humor in them
- Flexibility- the ability to adapt what one does to meet client’s needs
- Support- the capacity to encourage clients in making their own decisions while helping engender hope
- Goodwill – the desire to work on behalf of clients in a constructive way that ethically promotes independence
- Self-awareness – a knowledge of self, including attitudes, values and feelings and the ability to recognize how and what factors affect oneself.
Above all, a genuine desire to help others reflects in the specific personality of an effective counselor (Holland, 1997) and an empirical support for Holland’s hypothesis was found by Wiggins and Westlander (1979).