About Counselling Psychology
As a discipline within psychology, counselling psychology offers an alternative to prevailing approaches. In a sense, it marks the return of counselling values to the discpline of psychology. It is rooted in humanistic, critical and existential-phenomenological psychologies, in which the process of understanding and meaning making is central. The focus is on engaging with the client's lived experience, values and beliefs. It is evidence based and grounded in scientific research, but is not afraid to question the discourses that support today's focus on disorders and the manualised treatments in which the needs of the individual or family can be subsumed within the drive for economic efficiency. Counselling psychologists work with clients to weave together psychological formulations that are uniquely tailored to each client. They understand diagnosis, disorders and the medical context to mental health problems but also engage with the cleint's unique subjective experience to empower them in their recovery and in living their lives to the full. Counselling psychology is pluralistic, in that it does not accept that there is one best set of therapeutic methods. Rather, different clients will benefit from different and often blended approaches. The pluralist approach of counselling psychology has two central tenets: that lots of different things can be helpful to different clients and that if we want to know what is helpful for a particular client, we should talk with that particular client to find out.