The world, as we know it, has changed. The stimulants have gone into overdrive, and with that, so have the demands. There is so much happening everywhere―schools and colleges, the workplace, in relationships, in technology … and all this has had an effect on us, our living, and the way we think. It does not come as a surprise then that the stress and tensions in people’s lives have also escalated. With so much happening, and so much to deal with, it is not always possible for one person to do it all. And that is exactly why counseling becomes important. In this Buzzle piece, we will concentrate on the importance and growing demand of counseling in our lives, and how it helps.
Why is Counseling Important?
Sometimes it’s beyond one’s scope to be able to handle it all. There are so many things happening at so many levels which demand equal importance that it can get extremely overwhelming to take it all in, and do the best one can. From time to time, one requires assistance to cope with all these factors, and while some problems might be solved with the help of friends and relatives, there are others which are more complicated and may require a professional, or trained specialist to handle them―that is where counseling comes in. Counseling offers a platform whereby a person can speak to a counselor―a trained professional in that field, who will help him find a solution to his problem(s) through varied methods.
Why Does Counseling Work?
The basic crux of counseling remains the same, though the fields might change. The scope of counseling is extremely wide and includes fields, like career counseling, industrial counseling, marriage counseling, school counseling, addiction counseling, and so on. So, a counselor might be hired in educational institutes, medical centers, industries, etc.
When a person is stressed and emotionally involved in something, his reasoning could get blocked, and it might not be possible for him to objectively approach a solution, or the scope of the problem may be so complex and vast, that it is not possible for a person to handle it―that’s where he can seek the help of a professional.
A counselor is a non-judgmental professional who will keep the problems confidential, and that is why people find it a non-threatening approach to adopt for finding relief from their many problems.
How Does Counseling Work?
Counseling is a very wide term and includes several functions within itself. The scope of counseling will change with the nature of the problem. A single approach or method cannot work for all. Depending on the kind of problem or dilemma, the counselor will decide the approach to follow. In that direction, the scope of counseling can be broadly divided into certain functions. Let us understand what these are.
To reiterate what was said earlier, when a person has problems and is emotionally involved in something, it could block his reasoning and objectivity, and that’s where a counselor helps. Sometimes a person needs a listening ear so that he can vent and reach a solution. Problems that arise due to family feuds, work pressure, relationship problems in the personal and professional world, and the stress that is born out if these situations could be solved with the help of a counselor. For example, if parents opposing your choice of a partner can lead to a lot of stress, working with a counselor allows you to deal with that stress better.
Resolving a Conflict
Left on his own, a person who is stressed and facing a problem might not really be able to find a solution for himself. He then requires the help of a counselor. The counselor will help him get to the root cause of the problem(s) and understand it better. Along with that, he will also help with the kind of choices that he can look into and help him find a solution. An example of this would be the kind of career to choose―a person might be conflicted and confused about what to take up, and a counselor will help with exactly that.
A counselor, depending on the scope of the problem, will either facilitate the process for the person to find a solution by himself, or if the problem is too complex for a person to find a solution on his own, will provide solutions. For example, let’s say a person is interested in studying medicine, but he has either not got through the course or is finding it difficult to cope; in such a situation, the counselor will help by providing him with choices for an alternative or allied career, like physiotherapy or dentistry.
A very important section of counseling also involves conducting tests. These include, but are not limited to, aptitude tests, career tests, or stress tests in several industries. The main objectives of conducting these tests is for diagnosing mental illnesses, to understand the interests in order to help with a career choice, and to calculate the aptitude in order to recruit candidates in varied industries. After conducting a test, a counselor will have a session with the subject to talk about the test and provide the right direction to go forward.
Line of Treatment
One of the most important functions that counseling helps with is to approach each problem as unique, and in that way, decide upon the line of treatment. Even though counseling applies in all major fields, the scope of counseling will be different in different areas.
Sometimes a problem is simple, like confusion about the kind of subjects to choose for studying―a vocational counselor will help in this direction. At other times, problems could involve changing the very course of life, like a career to choose. In such a situation, a career counselor will conduct tests and help a student find a career that suits him best after combining his aptitude and interests, as well as after taking counseling sessions with him. Sometimes problems are highly complex and cannot be solved personally―something on the lines of addictions and phobias, which require careful planning of the kind of treatment that has to be used. These cannot be solved in a day or two, and require a combination of several techniques and multiple sessions to provide proper results.
The nature of the problems might be subject to change―like in schools, or addiction centers, but the nature of counseling will always be the same―to help people find a solution to their problems and aid them lead better lives. However, some people are of the opinion that seeking counseling is akin to admitting that one is weak, which is not really the right way to look at it. Counseling helps improve the quality of a person’s life, and that is the know all and end all of it all.