If you are trying to find a counselor serving Orange County CA, you may quickly find that it is actually quite difficult. Not because they are hard to find, but because there are so many! So how do you find the one that is right for you? Here are some top tips for you.
First of all, you need to make sure that your counselor has the right credentials. They should have a bachelor’s degree, as well as master’s degree in a counseling discipline. Additionally, they should be licensed to practice. Good counselors are committed to their professional development, so they should also regularly take part in further training. Do also look for memberships in relevant counseling and psychology boards. To maintain this membership, they should offer a high standard of counseling.
Assess Their Experience
All counselors should have experience. In fact, they usually have to work in a supervised environment for some time before they can practice independently. However, this doesn’t mean that they have experience in the area that concerns you. Think about what you need a counselor for – relationship issues, grief, children with behavior problems, phobias, careers, etc. – and then find a counselor who has verifiable experience in that specific area.
If you come from a different cultural background, or other minority demographic such as the LGBTQ+ community, then you should find a counselor who is experienced in dealing with this. That is not due to discrimination, but more due to the fact that you face very particular challenges that only an experienced counselor can truly understand. Without that experience, the counselor may do more damage than good.
Check Their Methods and Approaches
There are a lot of different schools of thought in counseling, and you need to know which one your counselor follows. Client centeredness is the most popular type of counseling available today. This type of counseling means that the solutions to the issues you are facing should be specifically designed to your individual needs, rather than being one size fits all solutions. Additionally, this type of counseling encourages you to find the solution to your problem yourself, with the guidance of a counselor.
There are other types of approaches that you may be interested in as well. Some popular forms of counseling include NLP (neurolinguistics programming), transactional analysis, and hypnosis. You may be interested in some of those, or you may find that you absolutely do not want any of those to be used. This is why you must learn about your counselor’s specific methods before you agree to attend a session.
If you are dealing with an issue that could do with the help of a counselor, you should find a professional as soon as possible. Hopefully, the above three tips will help you to achieve that. If you attend a counseling session and you don’t feel comfortable, however, then you need to be open and honest about that and, if necessary, find a different counselor instead.