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Counsellor & Psychotherapist Accredited Practising Dietitian
PACFA Accredited Supervisor
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  • Issue 15: How Do We Reflect When Clients Have a lot to Say? Responding Part 3

    Written by Tara MacGregor on 30-Mar-2015

    In this issue we are going to be exploring a little about clients who talk more than others and the challenges this may place on our practice of reflective listening.

    We are all familiar with the scenario. We invite our client to speak and within a short period of time we are getting that uneasy feeling.........'whoa...where is this going?' . We may start to panic, there is time to keep, the next client will be here in 15 minutes, we need to 'get to the point' but we know the value of reflecting and attending. It can all get us a bit overwhelmed.....

    It can be very hard to know what to attend to and what to reflect when the client has done the metaphoric, story-telling equivalent of turning their handbag upside down and letting gravity work its magic. Or man-bag.  It would be dangerous to assume that it is only our female clients who can be the talkative ones.

     A Strategy to Consider

    There are many reasons why some clients talk a lot. One is anxiety. Meeting with a Dietitian or talking about stressful behaviours can be extremely anxiety provoking. Long and complex stories are often a symptom of a hyper-aroused state and can be (unconsciously) functional in providing a great distraction.

    Anxiety in our client is important to acknowledge as it points to some ways we can be helpful in this situation. Here's a handy acronym to get a handle on things: 

    Read on to find out more

    Read Issue 15

  • Isue 14: What Can Get in the Way of Reflective Listening?. Responding Part 2

    Written by Tara MacGregor on 28-Feb-2015

    Responding reflectively to our clients can be a challenging skill to develop when we are trained in advisory and solution focused models. In the counselling skills training group this week we brainstormed together all of the possible road blocks to reflecting with our clients.

    Here is a summary of what was collated:

    • Trying to make 'it' OK for our client
    • Meeting requirements of our workplace assessment form
    • Focusing on an outcome
    • The Almighty Urge to ASK QUESTIONS
    • Lack of practice
    • Worry about getting the reflection 'wrong'

    To bring these road blocks to life, let's consider how these challenges may appear in response to the following client statement:
     
    'My last diet resulted in me gaining 5 kg more than I started with. It was a disaster.'

    Read on to learn more.........

    Read Issue 14