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Counseling on Integrity and Courage

I'm taking just a minute between writing reports at work to let you know my thought about the demonstration at the July leadership conference in Seattle on "What's an area where you're not quite honest with yourself? Where do you excuse yourself for not acting?" You asked the client to imagine that you (Harvey) were the client and to give you a direction against those attitudes. As she did, you asked her (still being the client), "What are you going to do to help me?"

I've counseled four people this way, at my Area workshop and my leaders' class, and had someone counsel me similarly. It got right to the point and was effective at exposing pretensions and early misinformation. I think it has particular usefulness for middle- and owning-class people with our denial of reality.

I also notice that it contradicts the tendency of the client to "wallow" in her or his distress. Asking him or her what direction she or he would give, like role exchange, pulls the client out of the victim role. It's good that the counselor expects the client to think, to add to the counselor's thinking. Clients keep discharging well with this, including lots of embarrassment at having to reveal both the "secrets" and the early messages they got about how to "deal" with the secrets. Have you pursued this line of counseling? Any new developments?

Marsha Hunter
Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA

Last modified: 2019-05-02 14:41:35+00