193 – Tackling Destructive Thought Patterns

193 - Tackling Destructive Thought Patterns

Personal Development Linked to Theory – Boundaries in Supervision

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Episode 193 of the Counselling Tutor Podcast opens with ‘Student Check-In’, in which presenters Rory Lees-Oakes and Ken Kelly discuss the importance of personal development for both trainee and qualified counsellors, and how this links to theory. Next – in our new slot ‘Focus on Supervision’ – Ken and Rory talk about the importance of boundaries in supervision. Finally, in ‘Practice Matters’, Rory interviews Clint Adams about how to support clients in tackling destructive thought patterns.

Personal Development Linked to Theory (starts at 1.55 mins)

Personal development is a topic that arises frequently in the Counselling Tutor Facebook group. If you aren’t already a member, do come along and join over 37,000 students, qualified practitioners, tutors and supervisors interested in the world of counselling and psychotherapy.

Personal development forms an important part of counselling training – and is assessed by assignments about what students have learned about themselves during training. It may feel daunting to write an assignment of this nature, and hard to know what to include.

Ken and Rory provide a number of tips on how to make this easier, including the following:

  • Look at the theory you have studied, and are practising in your skills and/or client sessions, and use this as a structure for your observations on yourself. For example, if you are studying the person-centred approach, you might use the concepts of introjected values, conditions of worth, frame of reference, the seven stages of the process, and configurations of self.
  • During the course, keep a journal as you go along. This allows you to look back on – and serves as a memory-jogger for – your personal developmental process, including any ‘lightbulb moments'.

Ken explores the feeling of disloyalty that students sometimes encounter in writing about the origins of their conditions of worth etc. in how relatives treated them when young.

Rory has prepared a handout for you on this important area of counselling training, ‘Personal Development in Counselling’. You can download this here.

Boundaries in Supervision (starts at 16.25 mins)

Rory reflects on his very first supervision meeting some years ago, and how his supervisor modelled boundary-setting at this early stage in his counselling career. Indeed, when – as a supervisor – you set clear boundaries with supervisees, this serves as an example of good practice for how they work with their clients.

Rory and Ken look at a range of issues relating to boundaries, including:

  • the various types of boundary in counselling and supervision, e.g. time boundaries and ethical boundaries
  • the particular importance of boundaries in online work, where the disinhibition effect can blur these
  • the importance of collaborative learning

Counselling Tutor has recently developed a level 6 certificate in online supervision. This will allow:

  • qualified counsellors to upgrade to online working
  • counsellors who are ready to train as supervisors to do so with a specialisation in online working.

The course is mapped to the supervision competences set by ACTO, the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) and the National Counselling Society (NCS). You can read more about it on the Counselling Tutor website.

Tackling Destructive Thought Patterns (starts at 32.30 mins)

Rory talks with Clint Adams, a former police officer who has studied psychology and counselling. Based in Australia, Clint works from a pluralistic perspective, drawing on different theories, models and techniques to fit each client.

Clint and Rory’s conversation covers a range of issues relating to how counsellors can support clients to tackle destructive thought patterns, including:

  • what destructive thought patterns are
  • how clients with destructive thought processes might present
  • understanding more about self and how we create thought patterns
  • the client being the expert on themselves
  • the importance of tailoring treatment to the individual
  • how his approach links with pluralism
  • collaborative working and onward referral.

Clint has recorded a lecture on this topic for Counsellor CPD members - you can watch it here.

In the lecture, he explains his Red Brain, Blue Brain model, in which he translates academic theory relating to brain functions into an easy-to-understand model that can be applied readily in your counselling practice.

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