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Discuss some issues that a counsellor must learn to guard against.

Discuss some issues that a counsellor must learn to guard against.


1 Answer
There are many issues that a therapist must learn to guard against. Let us discuss some issues in brief.

Flight into Health.

It is a condition, when in the early stages of counselling the client as well as the counsellor observes disappearance of the symptoms or experience relief for the client. These are temporary disappearances of symptoms bound to return. It is for the counsellor to convey it to the client that it is a temporary phase and the problem is yet to be solved.


Generally, during the sessions of the therapy, clients develop some feelings towards the therapist that they would have had for someone special in their life in the past. E.g., the client may compare the concern shown by the therapist to that of his parents or someone more special this is called transference. Transference is unconscious and one can judge transference when there is change in the attitude of the client towards the counsellor. Transference is either positive (when client like the counsellor) of negative(when client dots not like the counsellor). Transference should be discouraged as it may obstruct the procedure aft counselling.


It is a kind of transference, which is very common during therapy sessions. These are temporary and pass away with time. Dependence mostly develops in the initial stages of the therapy when the stress levels are at their peak. If it prolongs for a considerable period of time or become too strong, then there is need that it be addressed soon.


Counter transference happens when the Councillor develops some feelings towards the client like the he had for someone special in his lives, his children or spouse or a beloved etc. There is a strong chance of counter transference influencing the therapy as the counsellor might become biased while drawing conclusions of the therapy. He should be warm and kind and understanding but should keep himself detached emotionally with the client.


Resistance is a phenomenon in which the client resists the therapy given to him by the counsellor. Resistance happens when the client finds it difficult to bring about the behavioural changes as expected out of him and also feel frightened when they are examined. Resistance can be shown by not turning up for the counselling sessions or coming late, not responding to the counsellor, restlessness and being inactive during the sessions etc. The best way to tackle this is to directly examine the behaviour of the client and try looking at the unconscious motive of the client.

External Interference.

Interference from other sources during the course of counselling can be harmful for the client. It has bees seen that people close to the client may try offering contradictory counselling or may say something that further stresses the client, these kind of activities pull back all the success gained in solving the client’s problem. Such kind of interference should be objected to and the counsellor should handle the situation as appropriately as possible.

Omniscience and Omnipotence.

Many a times, counsellors feel that what they are saying is correct and they are the supreme authority is any case. Under this situation they may form thought like:

  • I have completely understood what the problem is.
  • This is a hopeless case.
  • The problem is not grave and can be solved easily.
  • I know what is best for the client etc.

One thing that is to be understood by the counsellor is that no problem is simple. Had it been simple then no one would have approached for counselling. No one should he be the deciding factor that it is a hopeless case before even initiating theĀ  process of counselling These actions undermine the potential of the therapy.

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July 19, 2019