Being self-aware and having the capability to think and feel emotions with clarity and understanding is part and parcel of being human. Unlike animals, our thought processes rely on far more than instinct alone.
Because of this, there is scope for the way we think to become a problem and to affect our emotions. If we go back a few hundred years we can see that psychological issues were approached with fear and unnecessarily invasive treatments. Thanks to the evolution of science and technology we now have a clearer understanding of the human brain and are able to look at these issues in a different way.
Today, the art of talking therapies such as counseling are used to help people come to terms with any problems they are facing, with an ultimate aim of overcoming them. A counselor is not there to sit you down and tell you what to do – instead they will encourage you to talk about what’s bothering you in order to uncover any root causes and identify your specific ways of thinking. The counselor may then look to create a plan of action to either help you reconcile your issues or help you to find ways of coping.
If you have decided to try counseling, you might be feeling anxious about your first session. Making the decision to get help and address the issues you are facing is an important first step and should be commended.
It is advised that you be honest and open when answering these questions in order to get the most out of your counseling sessions.
Your counselor should establish some clear boundaries when you begin your sessions that cover the following:
Most people can handle some level of personal stress. However, there are times when the stress of a situation demands more energy and resources than a person feels they have available. Sometimes, when dealing with sensitive personal problems, talking to an impartial person, versus a friend or relative, helps to gain a better perspective. Counseling can help people remember the strengths they have, identified the specific problem they are experiencing, and determine the direction they need to take to resolve that problem. Counseling can be both reassuring and supportive as well as challenging, as the client looks at the options available to them and the part they can play in remedying the current difficult circumstances.
Individuals seek resources outside of themselves (like counseling) when they find that they are no longer able to deal effectively with situations or make changes in their lives. A diverse range of students, both undergraduate and graduate, use our personal counseling services. Students seek counseling for a wide range of issues and concerns and they do not need to be in crisis to benefit from counseling.
We recognize that confidentiality is extremely important to students who seek our services and we assure it within applicable legal and ethical guidelines. Your counselor will take all possible precautions to maintain your confidentiality and guard against the disclosure of personal information unless informed, written consent has been obtained from you. Moreover, neither information shared in the counseling process nor the fact that you have been seen at Personal Counseling Services (PCS) will be shared with faculty, parents, or any other third party without your written consent.