It is vitally important the therapist authentically brings their wholeness of being to the room – and not a presentation: a sanitised, tidied, diluted ‘professional’ version of themselves. We need to risk being ourselves, because that then invites the client to do the same. Of course, that does not amount to bringing the chaos and demand of unmet therapist needs, core wounds and unprocessed material. On the contrary, it imports a commitment by the therapist to ongoing/in depth work with their own process – in the service of being someone who can bring their authentic being as they experience it, and sit with that spread around and behind them like a soft, subtle cloak, largely invisible to the client, whilst holding open, available, attentive space within the core conditions for the client. That is no small undertaking, and no amount of reading books or studying techniques/theory will achieve it.
Palace Gate Counselling Service, Exeter
Counselling Exeter since 1994