The core text for counselor skill development, Becoming a Skilled Counselor prepares students with the fundamental knowledge and skills necessary to be effective helpers. Authors Richard D. Parsons and Naijian Zhang explain the essentials of the counseling relationship, the dynamic and intentional nature of the helping process, the knowledge and skills necessary to facilitate change and the theories and research guiding the selection and application of interventions. Uniquely focused on the process of counseling, the authors’ approach invites students to conceptualize clients using a fluid and dynamic model rather than a linear, step-by-step process. Each chapter is structured to reinforce concepts by first introducing the key constructs and empirical support, then providing application opportunities through detailed case illustrations with dialogue transcripts and guided practice exercises. The text emphasizes mindfulness, intentionality, ethics, and reflection to aid counselors in their journey of self-discovery and professional identity development.

Goal Setting: Identifying what is Desired

Goal Setting: Identifying what is Desired

Goal setting: Identifying what is desired

If you don't know where you are going, you'll end up someplace else.

—Yogi Berra


The opening quote was uttered by Yogi Berra, the New York Yankees baseball team's hall of fame catcher. While humorous, it is a sad reflection of the experience of many clients seeking a counselor's assistance. Our clients are most likely quite clear about their displeasure of being where they are but may be unclear about where they would rather be in terms of their life experience. Helping a client move from the identification of the what is to an articulation of what is desired is the focus of goal setting, a process that requires both special knowledge and skill ...

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