If you feel troubled and don’t know what to do, then you must seek help from a professional. A counselor is a professional who takes care of both mental and emotional health. He helps and guides you in making decisions when facing challenges in life.
Picking a counselor isn’t easy. With the many choices you can see in the internet today, you will sure feel confused especially when it’s your first time. If you want to know how you should find a counselor, this article is right for you. Below are the different things you should put in mind when picking a counselor.
1. Get Recommendations – You begin making a list of counselors. You may ask your family doctor for a list of counselors he knows. Also, ask your relatives, friends, and even colleagues for recommendations. Once, you already have the names conduct a research about each of them. The most essential things to know are the counselor’s experience and credentials. After your research, you can call the counselor to check if they accepts new patients. If they do, make an initial consultation to talk with the professional.
2. Check Credentials – The license of the counselor is one essential things you should look for in a counselor. This proves that he has gotten the necessary education, training, and experience to offer counseling services. You should also check if the counselor has no malpractice issues in the past. Ask the counselor of his school, training , certifications and disciplinary history. Or, you can search for them online.
3. Consider Experience- The experience of the counselor in providing counseling services is essential. The more experience the professional has, the better results you can expect. Identify if the counselor has training in areas related to your present situation. Ask him how many patients with similar conditions he has handled before. If you need a particular type of therapy, be sure to ask the counselor of experience about it.
4. Consider Gender- For some patients, they feel most comfortable with the counselor having the same gender. If this is also true to you, then be sure to check the gender of the counselor you want to meet. Men and women are known to have different needs. So, you may get a counselor with the gender you prefer.
5. Check Communication Style- Another important consideration is the communication style of the counselor. During your first meeting, determine if he responds well to your questions. A good counselor always welcome questions and happily answers all of them making sure that you get a complete understanding. After your first meeting, what do you feel with him or her? Does he answers your questions accordingly and with respect? These are just some things you need to assess when checking the communication style.
6. Read Reviews- Do not also forget to take some of your time in reading reviews. There are many review sites you can visit. These sites includes the testimonials or comments of previous patients. Reading what they have to share gives you an idea on what to expect from the counselor.