Phil Monroe over at Musings of a Christian Psychologist offers some helpful insight for the counselor. He writes:
The best counselors know themselves well. No, I don’t mean that the best counselors are self-centered. Rather, good counselors understand their biases, foibles, strengths and challenges. The best counselors know themselves inside and out and notice when they start to project their own thoughts and feelings onto others.
Why is this capacity so important? A counselor must see and note the difference between yourself and the client in front of you. This is vitally important if you are going to be of any help to that person. When we fail to see the difference, we end up counseling the other person as if they were an extension of ourselves. As a result, we fail to challenge our own biases and assume what helped us will help them.
Two applications he makes are simple, but helpful:
- Don’t take yourself too seriously.
- Ask your friends who you really trust to give it to you straight about your annoying habits.