Archive | January, 2019

Your Goals!

28 Jan

I think it’s great if one of my grandchildren gets a goal in soccer! In every sport there is a mark to attain, whether it be in competition or to mentally note as one’s personal best Both objective and subjective goals are important indicators of
where we have been
where we currently are AND
where we want to go!
If we want to improve our lives, we may want to enlist a coach or counselor, and that’s where

“How to Get the Most from Counseling and Coaching”

comes in. Jean Eva’s book begins Chapter Two with “Goals Based on Relationship Issues.” What do you suppose is the main issue couples come to counseling? You guessed right: communication issues. These issues run the gamut from physical hearing problems all the way to complex communication about how and why a partner feels hurt. And these hurts can be compounded when replies are curt or sarcastic. What is often not realized is how the partner’s past experiences influence current feelings and behavior.
That is why couples counseling is not so simple and why it does involve unraveling the past — childhood memories and the aftermath of previous significant relationships. However, when couples can learn to actively listen to each other, they will each feel heard and understood. This alone is like a balm to soothe away the roughness of past hurts.
In choosing a couples counselor you will want to look for the following skills in your counselor:

1. impartiality; will hear and NOT judge each one of you
2. a teacher of communication skills — verbal and nonverbal
3. ability to help each of you to express emotions
4. ability to help you reflect back your partner’s emotions
5. takes time to get to know each of you individually
6. knows about personality type and can assess each of you through the MBTI
7. someone who can work with you individually AND in a relationship

Next article will look at some of the issues couples commonly face!

Factors to Consider in Choosing a Counselor

18 Jan

Perhaps you are stressed out beyond belief and you really feel as if you’d like to talk with someone who could be objective in helping you set priorities in your life. How would you go about choosing a counselor?
Or maybe you and your spouse have periods in which your relationship seems problematic, and you wonder whether the good times outweigh the bad or vice versa.
As you think about working with a trained counselor or coach, you should give thought not only to the geographic distance of the counselor’s office, but also to what factors might impact the quality of the helping relationship with this person.
So let’s look at whether you have very specific goals in mind, or whether you just want to get through a very rough time in your life. A specific goal might be dealing with your fear of speaking up in public, which you need to do every week at staff meetings. Or perhaps your “rough patch” has to do with a series of personal and/or professional losses. In scenario number 1 you will want a therapist who will specifically help you become more self-confident in public speaking (and maybe in other areas as well!).
In case number 2, you will want a therapist to guide you through grief and re-direct your attention toward hope. You will need support to let go of your loss and encouragement and creative thinking to embrace new directions in life. So based on what you perceive your goals to be, you will begin thinking about what you can expect from the relationship.
Of course, there are many other factors to consider, including the counselor’s philosophy or life values. Often you can get a glimpse of how a counselor presents him/herself through their website. Of course, you will do more research, including calling the counselor’s office and requesting a few minutes of her time. Your own values should be reflected somewhat in those of the counselor, so here are some questions to ask yourself:

1. How important is family to you?
2. How important is family AND community to you?
3. What values do you hold dear: courage, kindness, loyalty, privacy, compassion, etc.?
4. How do you balance career and personal life?
5. Do you have a spiritual life, and if so, how do you practice it in your daily life?
6. What are your views on social justice?
7. How important are money and material things to you?

The answers to these and similar questions will guide you not only in choosing a counselor who meets your needs, but also in beginning your own path to self-discovery.

New Book: How to Get the Most from Counseling and Coaching

14 Jan

Jean Eva has recently published a new book to help those just beginning counseling or those contemplating returning to counseling or coaching. She believes that many more individuals and couples would embark on a counseling journey if they knew more about the options: What to expect from a counseling relationship; how to formulate goals; how to negotiate fees; and so on. This is what one of Jean Eva’s reviewers wrote about her new book:

“Jean Eva’s book is straightforward, simple, to the point, and wise. She covers everything one needs to know prior to choosing a coach or counselor, and is also beneficial to those who have already started seeing a professional. What a GIFT — for a professional coach and counselor to share what she knows about the process you may be going through — something I’ve never known a provider to do before!

Whether you desire to be on a journey of self-discovery, healing, overcoming obstacles, making decisions, achieving a particular goal, or obtaining more self-confidence, this book is a MUST READ!” — Lyn Kelley, Ph.D., MFT, CPC

I will discuss the contents of Chapter 1 in my next blog article. In the meantime, pick up a copy from the convenience of your own home. You can download it on the Kindle app or buy the paperback version on Amazon.