Why Counseling is Like Home Repair
Updated: Oct 18, 2018
Your life is like a home. It will need maintenance and repair work over time. Counseling can assist with all types of life repairs. Just like your house, you have different levels of problems. Some problems are simple maintenance issues that prevent future problems (sealing windows for winter). Other problems may be a bit more serious (broken toilet), which require some direction from others (asking the home improvement store how to replace a toilet). Finally, major problems often require major assistance (hiring a contractor to replace your leaky roof). Just like a contractor, I can assist you with all types of life problems. Maintenance issues and minor problems will likely require less time and effort in counseling; whereas major problems could require substantial effort before fully remedied. Counseling can help in all these situations, whether it be providing encouragement to make a repair that you have been putting off, offering some helpful tips for resolving minor issues, or fully processing some deep issues. You determine what level of assistance I will provide. I have over 6 years of post‐graduate education and over 10 years of experience. I view all this knowledge as my “toolbox”. Different problems require different tools. I’m not going to hang a picture with a wrench or use a hammer to cut a log. Your problems require certain tools. Your personality and your problem will dictate which tools work best in your situation. Your neighbor would likely need different tools to fix the problems in his house. Together we will determine which tools will work best for your problem. Then I will teach you those tools and we will practice using them together. My approach to counseling is client‐centered, which means you are in charge. I will offer suggestions, education, guidance, and support, but you always hold the right to decline my suggestions or steer us in a different direction. There are two possible drawbacks…. 1. We have to communicate. Chances are that we can get you what you want, but only if I know what that is. If you don’t tell me about your leaky roof, then don’t be surprised when I’m explaining how to fix your toilet. Similarly, I need to know if the tools given don’t work, so I can give you new tools. In order for you to get the most for your money, we need to communicate. If you want less sessions due to financial restraints or more session to make progress faster, that can likely be arranged, but only if we are on the same page. If you hate reading, then let me know that you probably won’t read the book I just gave you. It’s okay because I have other techniques (tools) we can try instead. Just as you would be direct in telling a carpenter exactly what type of new deck you want; you should also be direct in letting me know what works for you and what doesn’t. 2. We have to work together. There is no “magic bullet” that makes your problems disappear overnight. Usually, I cannot offer a cure, but only techniques and strategies to improve your situation. And these strategies will only work if you use them. You cannot hire me to solve your problems the way you would hire a contractor to fix your roof. Obviously, I cannot make life changes for you. What I can do is assist in finding the best ways for you to make the changes necessary to get you where you want to be. I don’t accept any clients that I don’t think I can help, but we will have to work together to get results.