Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Counselling in a nutshell for Registrars

There are a number of counselling approaches that Doctors can apply in General Practice.

1 Supportive counseling= Validation, acknowledgement, compassion, empathy, reflection, externalize thought and psychoeducation. Great for when people are in crisis and are in a state of vulnerability. Registrars are more than capable of doing this already in my opinion. It is super important in my opinion. This is foundational. 

2 CBT (Cognitive Behavioural Therapy)= We teach people to be more aware of their thoughts, beliefs, and behaviours that lead to negative feelings, AND challenge or change those thoughts, beliefs and behaviours.  It is not easy for many as they are often too “fused” with their thoughts and beliefs. I believe that Registrars are getting some training in this through their training providers. I encourage all of you to build upon that through your career. It will also help you with your own life immensely. It is a bonus!

3 ACT (Acceptance Commitment Therapy)= ACT is more interested in the detachment from those thoughts and beliefs, rather than challenging or changing them through self awareness with values, self compassion, mindfulness, time, maturity, perceiving rather than judging, being present, seeing things through the lens of the here and now rather than the lens of the past (esp trauma and hurts), and taking value based actions. It is not easy but it can be cultivated. 

4 IPT/EFT (Interpersonal Therapy/Emotionally Focussed Therapy)= Interpersonal skills and relational skills training which require all of the above skills plus others.

5 An eclectic approach=all of the above. 

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