What a year of changes for the world. The biggest change for me personally, is how I now work with clients.
For over a decade I have been helping people in my counselling rooms in Baulkham Hills. With the advent of Covid, I wanted to continue to the work I was doing but could no longer see people face to face. As much as I didn’t think online counselling could be as effective, I had no choice if I wanted to continue the work I had started with many people. More than ever, clients wanted the support of their counsellor.
After a few days of sitting and doing nothing, I put in place online counselling sessions using Zoom. I’d never heard of it before this and suddenly it is a major means of contact and work for many of us.
The first online counselling sessions with my clients were unexpectedly seamless. We continued the work we had been doing and the feel was just as intimate. Clients told me that it felt just as good as being in the room with me.
Many people are put off by the idea of online counselling as they have been attending work meetings online and find it to be harder. The big difference is that it is just us. There is no big group, just you and your counsellor working with each other in a dedicated space.
Online counselling sessions for me, became a place where I was still connecting with my clients and providing a counselling service, but somehow, instead of decreasing the connection, it seemed to make it closer. A little less formal, a little easier to connect with the person on the screen and overall a really great experience.
The human connection is still there for counselling which is really important.
What else is great?
Well so far I have Zoomed with my clients in all sorts of spaces that work for them.
- In the park on lunch break
- At their home office
- From their work office
- In their car (this seems to be a favourite!)
- From the same suburb
- Living in another country (explains the clock behind them being a different time!)
- On their lounge in their pajamas
- In their kitchen
- At a primary school on lunch break
- Driving home from work (phone for this one, not video)
- Kids on the laps
- Kids playing in the background
- Dogs saying hello. Many, many dogs!
I’m looking forward to more interesting sessions as we go along. Quite literally, wherever people are, they can jump in for a remote counselling session and then get back to what they are doing with no travel time.
Online counselling has made it more accessible for everyone, more relaxed and just as effective. The response from clients has been great too. Some told me they like to see me in person (they feel calm with me) but once they had tried an online counselling session and experienced how efficient and effective it is, they are happy sticking with remote counselling.
And so, from the lockdown that stopped me in my tracks delivering my service and helping people, I have a new way of delivering my skill set to people and I’ve decided to stick with it. I look forward to meeting you on Zoom in the future.