by Allison Hadley, Clinical Intern at Owens & Associates
The primary definition of counseling from Wordnik.com is, “assistance (especially from a professional) in the resolution of personal difficulties”. When people seek out counselors, it usually is not because everything in their lives is going great! They’re angry or sad or numb all the time, or struggling with a mental illness, or there’s conflict with the family, romantic partner, or school. People seek counseling for all sorts of reasons.
When people first meet with counselors, they listen to what your concerns are, find out more about you and these concerns, and help you decide what goals you want to achieve. It might help to think of counselors as someone helping you with a garden. What flowers and herbs in your garden are growing best? Where are the weeds that need to be pulled? The shrubs that need to be pruned? What do you want this garden to look like? How do you want to feel in your garden?
If you want a fine garden, you have to work at it! Just like gardening, counseling takes work and diligence to get the results you want. You might get your knees and hands dirty pulling up weeds or deal with creepy-crawlers you’d rather not see. It’s like this with counseling, too. Doing the work both in and outside the counseling session is how to get the results you want. And remember, these things take time. A beautiful garden takes time to bloom, but doing all the work to get it is worth it. You are worth the hard work, too.