Why Is the Inital Consultation so Important? What Factors Will an Ethicial Therapist Cover at This Time?

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Why is the initial consultation so important? What factors will an ethical therapist cover at this time? Introduction
When a client first goes to a hypnotherapy appointment, the main reason why they are there is to receive help with a problem or issue that they would like to resolve. The very first hypnotherapy consultation is important for therapists to use this time to understand the client’s needs and make sure they have the best plan of action to help the client achieve their goal. In this essay I will discuss what is to be expected in an initial consultation appointment and the ethical elements the therapist will have to cover to ensure the first consultation (and possible subsequent consultations) are successful. When a client first enters into a therapy room, it is the role of the therapist to build a picture as to why they are there. One of the best ways to get an insight to the client’s initial problem is by asking them to fill in an initial consultation notation form on arrival. This will help to start establishing the client’s case history. The initial consultation form should have the basics, for example, the form would ask the client to state full name, contact details, date of birth, any medical history or medication they are currently taking. Current employment status should also be included. The form would also ask what problem the client would like to receive help in resolving, how long the problem has persisted for and also possibly ask what ways the client has tried to resolve the problem in the past. For a Therapist to have this basic information in front of them in the initial consultation is important as it will form the basis for further specific questioning throughout the session. For Hypnotherapy to work successfully on a client, it would help for the client to be as relaxed. This may start off to be a bit difficult in the first session as the client may be nervous about being there to discuss the problem or even have some concerns about hypnosis itself. This would be a good time for both the client and the therapist to discuss any concerns they may have and also be a good opportunity for the therapist to explain how hypnosis works. As mentioned in our required reading, ‘At the same time, it is also necessary to educate your client about hypnosis. The more the client understands, the more confidence he will have in the hypnotic process .By reassuring your client of his safety, he will be receptive to a good working relationship’ (1) At this stage of the initial consultation, it would also be good to mention a little something about the therapist’s background. This could include the therapists training, how they are a member of an accredited hypnosis society and even how many years they have been practising hypnotherapy. This will be good for the client to hear that they are dealing with a trained and confident hypnotherapist and will be a vital factor when establishing the all- important rapport between client and therapist. Rapport is especially important in the first consultation as it’s about establishing mutual trust and confidence. It is essential that the client (and the therapist) have this so they can start to create an effective working relationship. As mentioned in our reading material: ‘If a professional engages in the practice of hypnosis with a high degree of reservation and suspicion about the value of hypnotic treatment, he will not project a positive attitude or be able to function with true conviction. Regardless of whether the hypnotherapist has either too much confidence or too little, the relations with the client will be weak – possibly even doomed before it begins.’ (2) This is why it is so important to have a high level of trust and rapport between client and therapist. But the process of building rapport is a two-way street, as not only does the client need to have confidence in the therapist, the hypnotherapist also needs to feel confident that the client is there for the...
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