1. Describe briefly the micro-skills of listening and reflecting, and how they impact on the helpee.
Active listening through body language and minimal interventions; being physically and vocally attentive while being almost transparent in the interaction gives the client a space they rarely find available to them. Put simply, we are talking about a helper who is really listening, actually caring and not interrupting to project his or her own opinions. When I have combined this with empathic reflection the results have felt like a miracle to be part of. I have witnessed clients unravelling themselves and exploring deep and meaningful things about themselves that they somehow knew but had ‘covered over’ or ‘locked away’. I feel blessed to have been part of these instances and welcome more of the same into my future.
2. Drawing on your Reflective Journal and Skill Practice Evaluation Forms, explain how your skills have developed during the Skills Practices and / or in your personal and professional life.
Coming to this course from the ‘introduction to counselling skills’, I already had some awareness of the skills and my ability to use them, be that inconsistently. At the start of this ‘certificate’ course I had a very rough toolkit of active listening, paraphrasing and empathic reflecting. I have always been a listener; I strongly suspect during my childhood my mother’s needs rewarded me for listening. However, my mother’s needs also called for validation and me having an answer that made her feel ok about herself. This need to validate people was still present at the start of the course, alongside my need to be validated as a ‘life’ expert having the answers people need; I wanted to ‘fix’ people with my views of life and the attainment of fulfilment from my years of self development and reading.
Person Centered theories have totally changed my approach. I have been amazed and overjoyed to