Why is the professional helper willing to talk about some of her own personal habits?
Because I strongly believe in WALKING the TALK. When you work in a profession that involves exploring the behaviour of others and supporting them through challenges and change, then its paramount to be aware of your own experiences of self, challenge and change. When we don’t have adequate self awareness and don’t function from an actively conscious personal space, then we can easily fall into the role of hypocrite.
Imagine if you will …
A woman recieving counselling support through her messy divorce, by a counsellor creating the conflicts in her own divorce. A man recieving support for his alcohol addiction from a psychologist who needs to drink every night. A young girl seeking support for her promiscuity by a guidance officer who engages in casual sex.
It’s been said that we gravitate towards those who reflect and mirror back to us important insights about ourselves that assist us on our own personal growth.
IF we believe this concept to be true, then imagine HOW it would impact on our sessions and interactions with others. Every experience with another person would take on a whole new meaning. Each and every connection becoming a new and wonderful learning opportunity. We would begin to experience the world in a new way.
Personally, I believe this statement to be true and therefore believe that our helping roles are also helping us in some way. Ive experienced how my own self awareness has improved my interactions with others, which is why I think it’s time to rethink HOW we help ? and question WHY we help ? So we can privelage the human experience to its full potential.
When we position ourselves as the ‘professional’ then we tend to follow those professional guidelines of casting our own experiences aside, so we can focus on the needs of the client … but can we do this ???
HOW can we put part of ourselves aside and still be completely present ???
WHAT if we viewed the client as the professional ???
HOW can we maintain our professionalism and be more personal in our interactions ???
Having worked in a helping role for 15 years, I’ve both been and seen professionals with the best of intentions, who are either driven by egos or working through their own challenges. Does this impact upon the helping role ??? … you betcha it does !!!