If you’re thinking about counselling I understand that making your first appointment with someone you have never met can be daunting.
I’m here to help by telling you what to expect from counselling sessions with Lisa Almand Consulting and make it a little easier and more comfortable for you.
Firstly, if you’re not sure if I’m the right person, please feel free to take 10-15 mins to book a call and get a feel for me on the phone. Ask the questions on your mind. It’s not necessary for you to tell me everything about you on this call. Remember this call is about finding out how I work and how that will benefit you and your reason for wanting counselling. So, keep it simple, casual and be inquisitive!
After you’ve taken the step of booking an appointment, what might you expect on the first appointment? I have two simple goals in our first session:
- To make a connection with you and your personal experience.
- To develop a perspective around why you are here, one that fits with you.
Through my two goals I am better able to work with you towards your treatment goal. Don’t worry about where to start, it’s my job to make conversation and do the work in your first session.
To help me gain context it’s likely that I’ll stop you from time to time to ask questions. I’ll ask questions like:
- What’s brought you to the appointment today and how does that feel for you?
All my questions are about understanding you and how you’re feeling. I will be wanting to know the impact your issue is having on you in your life and what changes you have noticed. I’ll also want to know how you’ve been coping so far, what has been working well and what hasn’t.
When I have a sense of what might be going on I will present this to you through a short summary checking in with you to see if we have a match.
When I have presented a perspective, you may indicate to me “Yes that’s about it, you got it” or “yes mostly but there is a bit missing” or “no you haven’t got it yet.” If it is no, that I didn’t get it at all, I hope you will give me a second chance. Often, I’m sitting with a few possible conclusions in my head. It’s about finding the right way forward for you.
Once aligned with you I will propose a way forward to achieving your desired outcome. You can agree to this or suggest another way that you think would work better for you.
You will most likely be given a resource to take home or a skill or strategy to practice over the coming week before we meet again.
All the skills and strategies I teach have been tried and experienced by me, personally. However, I need them to work for you, so it’s important to give your feedback so I can fine tune these in our coming sessions to make them most effective for you.
The sessions that follow will be building on acceptance, committed action and the development of resilience through skills. You’ll learn more about yourself, your abilities, and strengths and get a deeper understanding of your values.
During each of your following sessions, I’ll ask you for an update of your time between appointments. I’ll also ask if there’s anything you specifically want us to cover during your session.
Lastly you should never feel worse at the end of your counselling session. If for some reason this is the case, I would appreciate you letting me know as I care about you and I see it as my responsibility to assist you to feel better before you leave my office, call, or zoom session.
If you’d like to know more about sessions with Lisa Almand Consulting, you can book your initial counselling session discovery call here. I’d love to hear from you.