There is a growing interest on what clients have to say about their experiences in counseling and psychotherapy. Why do they say the things they say? In this powerful analysis, On Being a Client identifies a number of clear and potent messages that transcend the complexity of counseling thought and psychotherapeutic practice. Using clients' experiences as a framework, the author creates a general theory of counseling and psychotherapy. He proposes that the social and psychological structures which generate the clients' experiences underlie all psychotherapeutic encounters, and the self forms and reforms in social relationships--including those established in the therapeutic context. In this fascinating volume, the reader is invited to consider a number of thought-provoking claims about the universal qualities that characterize good and bad practice in all types of counseling and therapy. This distinctive and accessible analysis is invaluable reading for all counselors, therapists, and other mental health professionals, whether they be in training or already established in practice.

The Nature of the Counselling Relationship

The nature of the counselling relationship

Whatever the counselling style or psychotherapeutic orientation, most practices involve two people who meet, talk and form a relationship structured around a system of ideas purporting to explain human behaviour. The argument has been that it is not the particular set of ideas which forms the basis of success, simply the fact that an intellectual structure is created which houses the talk and the relationship.

Most psychologies and their application in schools of therapy and counselling explain the individual as an isolated self who emits behaviours that can be examined and understood by an objective observer. Theories are developed which seek to explain why individuals do what they do using universal principles that are true ...

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