Listen to the inner light; it will guide you. Listen to inner peace; it will feed you. Listen to inner love; it will transform you, it will divinise you, it will immortalise you.
Sri Chinmoy

Dr Counseling is a process that helps people comprehend and navigate through their complex emotions, thoughts, actions, needs, difficult experiences and relationship issues through a discussion with an expert in a safe and confidential environment. It is usually a short-term process focussing on present problems and specific life situations. The goals of counselling include increasing self-awareness and self-acceptance, developing better coping skills and finding ways to grow and blossom in all spheres of life. The counselor does not tell the client what needs to be done but empowers the client to come up with his or her own solutions and find courage to try out those solutions.

The counseling relationship is unlike all other relationships - whatever the client brings up is never dismissed. In other words, the client has the space to express whatever comes to his or her mind including all kinds of negative thoughts, feelings and experiences. Counselors firmly believe that whatever seems irrational at the outset is an important part of the client waiting to be heard, acknowledged and understood. Therefore, they listen patiently and nonjudgmentally and try to understand the client's narrative in an empathic manner. Through this process, the client gains a deeper self-knowledge, feels accepted and loved and develops new ways of thinking, feeling and behaving.

Psychotherapy aims to understand and treat psychological, mental and personality disorders by providing a long-term and stable therapeutic relationship and using a wide range of techniques and strategies. Some people come for psychotherapy because they find it difficult to carry on with their lives, others want some help in taking major decisions and a few simply wish to explore their inner world, understand themselves better and integrate various parts of their self. While this relationship offers emotional support, acceptance and a consistent anchor point to the distressed client, it has clear professional boundaries. Although the clients share their deepest fears, sorrows, transgressions, failures and the most vivacious victories and joyful moments with their therapists, there is no reciprocity from the other side.

Good therapists never reveal their personal information and stay away from developing any real relationship or friendship with the client. Doing so will lead to the formation of a dual relationship which in turn might sabotage the therapeutic relationship and harm the client. At present, the field of psychotherapy is highly specialized and there are many different types of psychotherapies available. Some psychotherapists are trained predominantly in one approach while others try to combine two or more approaches in their work. Given this, finding the right counselor or psychotherapist to address your issues might seem to be a difficult task but in reality, it is relatively easy.

Begin by reflecting whether you have a short-term specific problem or if there is something that has been bothering you for a long time. This will help you in figuring out whether you need a counselor or a psychotherapist. Once you have some clarity, look for a professional whom you can bond with and trust. Review your progress at regular intervals and discuss with your counselor or psychotherapist to figure out how much help are you getting from the process. While short-term difficulties get sorted out quickly, some long-term problems can take months and even years to resolve fully. Nonetheless, if psychotherapy is working for you, there will be a marked improvement in your inner state very soon.

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