TYPES OF COUNSELING SERVICES
There are many therapeutic modalities that may be effective for various individuals. It is important to note that each therapeutic modality is careful consideredbased on the needs of the client. Not all clients need all therapeutic modalities in order to make the necessary gains in their lives. However some clients may benefit from a few modalities. For example, many people who are feeling depressed benefit greatly from a mindfulness based cognitive behavioral approach to therapy. Clients who would like to make fast changes usually benefit from brief or solution focused therapy. Some clients benefit from engaging in both individual and group counseling.
MINDFULNESS BASED THERAPY
Mindfulness is a process of learning to pay attention and be aware of the present moment by brining the clients’ whole being into the process. It is practice of calming the mind and relaxing the body in order to see life more clearly.
The foundations for practicing mindfulness require a non-judgmental mental attitude, patience, beginners mind, trust in yourself and your feelings, non-striving and allowing yourself to be as you are, acceptance of the present moment, and letting go or non-attachment.
Mindfulness focuses on awareness of body, breath and mind in order to bring into awareness what arises and cultivate an atmosphere of learning, growth and change in the present moment.
COGNITIVE BEHAVIORAL THERAPY (CBT)
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is a process by which the client is made aware of how their thoughts, and emotions are related to their behaviors and choices. The way we interpret events and situations greatly depends on how we feel and act in the world. The word cognize means to think. If we think negatively it will effect how we feel and behave. The ultimate goal of CBT is to break the negative thinking, feeling and behaving cycle and change it into a positive cycle. This brings more clarity, happiness and fulfillment as clients are able to make more positive choices in their lives.
RATIONAL EMOTIVE THERAPY
Rational Emotive Therapy is type of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. The focus of this therapy is to bring into awareness the clients’ irrational beliefs and assumptions that are causing emotional distress in their lives. People who suffer a lot of anxiety and stress often benefit from this form of therapy. The goal is to eliminate their negative thinking patterns in order to feel happier.
SOLUTION FOCUSED OR BRIEF THERAPY
Solution focused therapy is focused on the present moment. It focuses on goals that the client wants to achieve by gathering their strengths and inner resources. The therapy is usually brief (a few sessions) and the focus is on implementing the desired changes in the persons’ life. Solution focused therapy works on the premise that life is always fluid and changing. It focuses on solutions rather than issues and symptoms. The focus of therapy is the clients’ preferred future or course of action. The therapist’s role is to foster the relevant positive thinking, strategizing, confidence and self-esteem in the client in order to act with confidence to achieve the desired goals.
INCORPORATION OF PERSON'S IDENTITY, CULTURE AND SPIRITUALITY IN THERAPY
With all client groups, the whole of the person is always considered. The person’s identity and values hold an important role to their overall mental, physical emotional and spiritual healing. The person is always treated with worth, dignity and respect. Many people choose to discuss their culture, religion and spiritual values in therapy. Their strengths and resources in these areas are great ways to tap into their healing, to help them live a more positive and fulfilling life. Reiki, acupuncture, massage and other natural healing methods and herbs are great sources of strength and healing. As people are mind, body and spirit, a holistic approach to healing offers greater success than any one method.
In family therapy the whole family is seen as a system or unit. All members act upon each other and affect each others’ well being and happiness. Sometimes parents may have unresolved childhood traumas that lead to projections on their children. Other times members may be alienated from each other due to conflicts and lack of positive communication skills. In addition, some family members may have mental health issues, addictions and behavioral challenges that impact on the whole family and warrant the need to help the whole family get back to peace and harmony. Positive relationships are fostered through building understanding, healthy emotional and physical boundaries, positive communication and a non-blaming attitude.
COUPLES / MARITAL THERAPY
Marital counseling focuses on improving the quality of the relationship between couples. The focus is on building trust, understanding and open and positive communication. The satisfaction of the relationship is considered and various areas such as affect, quality time, role allocation, stress, work life, finances, cultural values, spiritual beliefs and family of upbringing are considered.
PARENT EDUCATION TRAINING
Parent training focuses on improving the parents’ knowledge, and implementation of positive parenting strategies. This includes training the parents to know how to implement proper limits and boundaries but also have a loving and affective relationship with their children. In addition, in two parent families both parties are encouraged to follow the same routines and have consistency. Parents are supported and validated in their parenting role and their strengths and resources are highlighted.