Wednesday, 15 April 2015

Meaning and Introduction to Counselling

The term ‘counselling’ is used in a number of ways.
Very often the term counselling and psychotherapy are
synonymously used. In the current usage also,
counselling and psychotherapy are used
interchangeably. F.P. Robinson describes counselling
as aiding normal, people to achieve higher level
adjustment skills which manifest themselves as 
increased maturity, independence, personal integration
and responsibility. The phrase “increasing human
effectiveness” is used frequently to describe the goal of
counselling. G.W. Gustad has defined counselling as a
learning-oriented process, carried on in a simple oneto-
one social environment, in which a counsellor,
professionally competent in relevant psychological skills
and knowledge, seeks to assist the client by methods
appropriate to the latter’s needs and within the context
of the total personnel programme, to learn more about
himself, to learn to put such understanding into effect
in relation to more clearly perceived, realistically defined
goals to the end that the client may become a happier
and more productive member of his society” (Journal of
Vocational Psychology, No.36). In short, counselling is
an interpersonal process through which guidance and
support is provided to persons with psychological
problems. These problems may be personal or
interpersonal in nature. Thus Counselling seeks to
resolve personal and interpersonal problems through a
variety of approaches, and in a way that is consistent
with the values and goals of society in general, and that
of the client in particular.
Counselling in this sense is not absolutely distinct from
guidance and education that the social workers often
give through various programmes. Rather, it is an
additional skill and understanding of common, yet
complex emotional and personality problems. Through
counselling the counsellor helps the person to develop
self-awareness and explore the possibilities to develop
his/her latent capacities. Thus the scope of counselling
is to increase both self-awareness and self-management.
Counselling initiates a process of self transformation in
the person. The counsellor through their skills help the
client to assess his/her own life, strength and limitation.
Thus counselling is the process by which a skilled person
aids another person in the total development of his/her
personality.