Counselling Skills for Complementary Therapists

Counselling Skills for Complementary Therapists

Counselling Skills for Complementary Therapists

Counselling Skills for Complementary Therapists

Synopsis

Which skills should a complementary therapist develop? How might the skills be used more effectively? What are the ethical issues that a complementary therapist must consider? When and how should a complementary therapist seek help? As the demand for tighter professionalism grows in the complementary healing world, and government regulation increases, a more skilled approach to counselling patients has become priority. Surprisingly, few practitioners over the past thirty years have used more than basic listening skills as part of their clinical work, largely because they were not taught counselling techniques. Most continue to rely instead upon sympathy and intuition to help their patients face emotional problems. Yet advice, however well-meant, could prove dangerous or, at the least, inappropriate.This pioneering book seeks to change this. Counselling skills help prevent making mistakes, they tell therapists what they can and cannot do. In turn, they then guide the patient towards taking more responsibility for their life and to discover their own 'healer within' to speed recovery. In using talking treatment as well as their primary discipline, practitioners may now offer a truly holistic mind-body-spirit dimension to their work.Theoretical consideration of topics such as transference and counter-transference are woven together with case studies, practical tips, personal anecdotes and observations, to make this an accessible and informative book for professionals, graduates and students.

Excerpt

Many training courses for those wishing to become complementary therapists do not provide the opportunities to develop and practice the counselling skills needed to prepare graduates adequately for the psychotherapeutic processes occurring within patient-practitioner interactions. The necessary theme of practitioner development skills within courses should extend throughout the provision embedding counselling skills, and in particular draw on experiences and incidents from clinical practice. So much is to be gained from the evaluation of cases across the entire spectrum of therapies and healthcare professions. Some quality courses ensure that practitioner and counselling skills are developed within multidisciplinary groups. In this way, ‘critical incidents’ and the transferability of the insights gained are clearly recognized, preparing practitioners for participation in the multidisciplinary supervision that may be a requirement in a future integrated healthcare system.

By drawing on numerous examples from widely diverse therapies, Rosie March-Smith’s book is relevant to all complementary therapists and to practitioners in other healthcare professions. In addition, no matter how much previous training or experience the complementary therapist has had in counselling skills, the cases included in her book provide invaluable illustrations of concepts and demonstrate the application of theory to practice. For all those in practice as complementary therapists . . .

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