Sunday, July 10, 2011

Mastering the Art of Counseling

I have been working towards a Master's Degree in Professional Counseling for the past two years and am 2/3 of the way finished.  Since I am doing my entire Master's online, I am required to travel up to school and complete three one week intensives.  Last week was one such week. It changed my life and brought me into a deeper understanding of myself and how I see my world.  For one thing, I have an opinion, we all have opinions, but one of the things I hide behind is that judgement of the world around me.  For example, if I see somebody doing something wrong I pass judgement quickly on their behavior or their actions.  At least I used to do it a lot more, because even though I have improved dramatically in this area, I still suffer from the occasional exclamation about how ridiculous I find something to be.  Quite frankly, it is starting to bother me that I used to look at life from this perspective.  Without sounding too judgmental, I am also aware of when others around me are starting to express negativity and rather than feed into theirs, I have been really working hard at not responding to it.  I cannot avoid it, but I sure as heck do not have to feed into it.

Self awareness is a huge part of a counselor's toolbox.  It is the vehicle by which we gauge our biases towards life, and helps foster our understanding of self in light of the world around us.  It is part of the construct of our worldview and shapes how we interact within that dynamic.  For example, if I had the worldview that people are nothing but drama, then I am going to look for drama to verify that supposition.  On the other hand, if I believe that people are made in the eyes of God, then no matter how they behave, I try and view them through the lens of Christ.  When you stop and consider, it is a pretty serious matter to align your principles and your life according to that train of thought. 

So stop and consider.   In light of what you experience and see going on in the world around you, what is your worldview?

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