Are you thinking about becoming a counselling psychologist? With there being so many fields of psychology, it might be tough to choose the right one. Well, here’s what you need to know about what is counselling psychology and how to become a successful counselling psychologist.
What Is Counselling Psychology?
It is a specialty in professional psychology that focuses on health service provision as well as general practice. The main focus is how individuals function at a personal level as well as other relationships throughout their lives. Counselling psychology addresses everything from social, emotional, physical, school and work concerns that most people go through in their lives.
Also, it focuses on stressful events, whether huge or minor, that most people might struggle with personally or in their relationships. Counselling psychologists are tasked with helping people with their mental, emotional and physical issues to improve their overall well-being as well as resolve crises and alleviate any negative feelings. They also provide assessment, treatment and diagnosis of any severe symptoms linked to psychological issues.
What Are The Various Fields Of Study?
As mentioned, counselling psychology focuses on any individuals life span. Therefore, all stages such as adolescence, childhood, adulthood and the elderly stage is considered. Here, they focus on issues such as the following:
- What are the strengths and healthy aspects of individuals? For instance, is it being seen as couples, individuals, organizations, groups or more?
- What are the situational or environmental influences? For instance, how does gender, culture and lifestyle shape anyone’s concerns or experiences?
- Are there any issues of social justice or diversity such as advocacy?
- How does work or career affect anyone’s lives?
Some of the problems addressed in this field of psychology commence from the developmental areas (such as a persons lifespan) as well as cultural and environmental perspectives. These issues include the following;
- Work or school adjustment concerns
- Decision making process between work or career and dealing with any transitions starting from school to work and also retirement.
- Any difficulties in the relationships such as familial and marital relations.
- The presence of skill or learning deficits when tackling something new
- How to cope with negative life events as well as stressful issues
- Any organizational deficits present
- Dealing with issues such as injury, diseases or physical disabilities and adjusting to them accordingly.
- Social as well as personal adjustment
- Dealing with ones identity and developing it
- Any difficulties, especially persistent ones, when socializing with other people
- Disorders, especially mentally related
Some of the skills and techniques utilized in counselling psychology include the following:
- Psychotherapy and counselling for the individual, group or family in question
- Trauma and disaster management as well as crisis intervention
- Assessment skills and proper diagnosis of disorders, especially psychological ones
- Workshops and programs to create awareness about mental health, relationship issues, workplace issues and other problems that can be prevented with proper knowledge.
- Further consultation with other organizations
- Evaluation of the program as well as treatment to determine the client’s progress.
- Proper training
- Clinical supervision for worrying cases
How To Become A Counselling Psychologist
Now that you know what is counselling psychology, the next step is understanding how to become a counselling psychologist. Hereís what you need to know. First, you need to enroll for a 4 year program to earn a Bachelor degree in psychology. There are some universities that offer masters and doctoral programs in counseling psychology. You should also follow up for these advanced programs to get ahead of the rest.
Note that, depending on the university enrolled, the curriculum requirements might vary from one to the other. Besides the skills and techniques mentioned above, the colleges might also teach varying therapy and counseling techniques.
So, What’s The Work Of A Counselling Psychologist?
If you have gone through the recommended educational programs, the next step is becoming certified. Once you have the boards approval, you can become a practicing counselling psychologist in whatever state you prefer. Well, some of the tasks performed by a counselling psychologist include the following.
Your work will involve helping patients get through any negative emotions and thoughts that might ruin their day to day activities. You’re also obligated to treat patients with crippling psychological disorders such as anxiety or depression. Of course, you have the right to specialize in other areas. For instance, you can choose to specialize in vocational stress or grief counselling depending on your preferences.
The number of patients you might work with might vary depending on the approach you choose. You can either choose a group approach or one on one approach. Most counselling psychologists prefer working with their patients on a weekly basis. That way, they can keep a good record of their clients progress.
As a counselling psychologist, you need to create a warm and comfortable ambience allowing the patient to open up about their issues. You’re required to be non-judgmental and understanding since different people have varying issues. You can ask about your patients feelings or behavior so as to assess and diagnose the underlying problem. It’s advisable to ask leading questions allowing the patient to open up about the issues they are facing.
Counselling psychology has become quite popular for many reasons. First, since it’s tough for most people to open up to their peers or colleagues, a counselling psychologist has the professionalism needed to find the root of the problem and help the patient through it.