145 – Working with Shame in Counselling

145 - Working with Shame in Counselling

External Verification of Training Courses - General Data Protection Regulation

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In episode 145 of the Counselling Tutor Podcast, Ken Kelly and Rory Lees-Oakes explore shame--a widespread human emotion--and working with shame in counselling. 'Check-In with CPCAB' then looks at the role of external verifiers in counselling training. Last, in 'Practice Matters', the presenters discuss the General Data Protection Regulation and its implications for counselling professionals.

 * BACPAC practice management software for counsellors and psychotherapists is a sponsor of the Counselling Tutor Podcast.

Get a 30-day free trial of BACPAC and a 30% discount by using the discount code CT2020

Working with Shame in Counselling (starts at 1.45 mins)

Feeling shame is a natural part of being human, and does have a useful function in helping members of a society to live together harmoniously. Shame of this type can be referred to as 'healthy shame' or 'adaptive shame'.

However, shame can become toxic, with individuals affected by individual and cultural introjects and conditions of worth that lead to them feeling deep worthlessness.

This feeling is often kept hidden, making it especially difficult for people to talk about to others.

Shame may reveal itself in the counselling room indirectly via a range of vocabulary and body language, as Judith Lewis Herman describes in her 2007 paper on shame.

Ken and Roy explore working with shame effectively in counselling: unconditional positive regard towards the client and what they are bringing is paramount.

Normalisation and psycho-education are also important elements in supporting clients who are experiencing shame.

Rory has written a handout about working with shame in counselling. This is available here.

Check-In with CPCAB: External Verification of Training Courses (starts at 11.40 mins)

Rory talks to Heather Price (Senior Counselling Professional) at CPCAB (Counselling & Psychotherapy Central Awarding Body) about the role of external verifiers.

These awarding-body representatives visit training centres regularly (at least once a year) to inspect their standards of delivery (teaching) and assessment.

Rory and Heather explore:

  • why external verification matters, and its benefits to students
  • what external verifiers are looking for when they attend a training centre
  • how external verifiers gather the evidence they need
  • how external verifiers relate to students and tutors.

In short, external verification involves meeting groups of students (without tutors present), meeting tutors, and sampling internal portfolios. If the verifier is not satisfied with what they find, it is the tutors not students who are held to account.

Moreover, the ensuing discussion aims to be constructive rather than punitive, with the aim of ensuring high quality standards are adhered to across all providers.

You can find more information about CPCAB on its website. CPCAB is the UK's only awarding body run by counsellors for counsellors.

General Data Protection Regulation (starts at 26.05 mins)

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which came into law on 25 May 2018, specifies how data must be managed, stored, distribute and handle data.

This issue is mentioned regularly in the Counselling Tutor Facebook group. It is vital to understand and adhere to GDPR, especially if you are a private practitioner and this is therefore your individual (rather than agency's) responsibility.

Ken and Rory explore the scope of both GDPR and when you need to register with the Information Commissioner's Office (for practitioners in the UK). Failure to comply with these requirements risks incurring large penalties.

Other topics covered in this segment of the podcast include the requirements of insurers and ethical bodies - and the importance of your privacy statement.

Rory has recorded a full lecture on this topic, which you can watch here.

Practice Matters is sponsored by Bacpac, client-management software for counsellors and psychotherapists. Bacpac offers all Counselling Tutor Podcast listeners a 30% discount, which you can claim by visiting the Bacpac website and using the code CT2020.