Counselling process involving various steps shown in below figure:
- Need Awareness: Most individuals go about their daily activities without much awareness of situations. Inwardly they may be experiencing suffering yet they may not seek help. Some individuals experience their problems either because of their severity or because some closes to them draw their attention to the problems. Such individuals are potential clients. They seeks professional assistance because of feelings of distress and because they lack the necessary ability and information to deal with them on their own.
- Development of Relationship: This stage focuses on the development of an emotionally warm and understanding relationship between the counsellor and the client. The level of relationship established goes a long way in determining the outcome of the counselling. The core of the counselling process is the relationship established between the counsellor and the client. It helps the client to recognize these feelings and ideas.
- Clarification of Problems: The expression of feeling not only helps in the release of emotional tensions but can also help in clarifying problems and putting them in perspective.
- Exploration of Deeper Feelings: It is necessary that the counsellor should not be content with a superficial view of the client’s feelings. The counsellor must try to explore the deeper feeling and conflicting situation,which have not only to be brought to the surface but also satisfactorily resolved without damaging the individual’s personality.
- Integration of Conflicting Situations and Feeling: This stage focused on integrating the conflicting situations and feelings that are at the root of the client’s problems. This stage therefore,consists of working in close harmony with the client with proper understanding; regard and sympathy for the client’s inner feelings. this way, the counsellor is able to synthesise and integrate the client’s potentialities,needs and aspirations,and direct them towards appropriate goals.
- Developing the Awareness of Counselee: The client is helped in gaining insight into himself/herself,his/her problems and the world around him or her.
- Using Counselling Benefits: This is the stage in which the client is encouraged to make use of the benefits gained from the session to the world of realities. If the client is not able to adopt to the surrounding,then it can be inferred that he or she has not gained much from the counselling. It does not mean that the stage must be followed religiously. The experience of the counsellor goes a long way in determining the sequence to follow.