People come to counselling for all kinds of reasons - as the result of a significant change in our lives such as a bereavement or broken relationship, or we might be feeling low, anxious or stuck and don't know why.
Through a self reflective process, counselling enables you to gain awareness into your thoughts and feelings, helping you to move forward. It is the counsellor's role not to provide the answers or give advice, but to guide and support you through this process to a place of deeper understanding.
Counselling is a dual venture and relationship, so it is important that you find a counsellor who you feel is right for you; who you can trust and feel comfortable with. No relationship works without those components, so don't be afraid to 'shop around' to find the right fit.
All counsellors are trained in, and use various models in their approach to therapy; the model I use is Person-Centred which is a humanistic approach founded by Psychologist Carl Rogers in the 1950's. Person Centred counsellors believe that a human's experience is unique, and as such cannot be diagnosed, generalized or categorized. This approach to counselling means that the therapist does not assume the position of ‘expert’, but instead trusts in the client’s own emotional and cognitive process to move through his/her hurt to a place of self understanding and acceptance. It is the therapists’ role to facilitate this process through deep empathic listening and unconditional positive regard.
There are many different approaches to counselling and psychotherapy. If you would like to read the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy's brief overview of theoretical approaches, check out this link: http://www.bacp.co.uk/seeking_therapist/theoretical_approaches.php