How can career counseling and therapy help me?

A number of benefits are available from participating in counseling. I specifically provide ways to help you manage the concerns and decisions related to your job and career. I can provide support, problem-solving skills, and enhanced coping strategies for issues such as depression, anxiety, unresolved childhood issues, grief, stress management, body image issues and other blocks to happiness. I can offer a fresh perspective on a difficult problem or point you in the direction of a solution. The benefits you obtain from counseling depend on how well you use the process and put into practice what you learn. Some other benefits available from therapy include:

• Attaining a better understanding of yourself, your goals and values
• Developing skills for improving your relationships
• Finding resolution to the issues or concerns that led you to seek counseling
• Learning new ways to cope with stress and anxiety
• Managing anger, grief, depression, and other emotional pressures
• Improving communications and listening skills
• Changing old behavior patterns and developing new ones
• Improving your self-esteem and boosting self-confidence

What is involved in career counseling?

At our first meeting, I get to know you better by asking about your background, your goals, and reasons for coming. This information helps me develop a plan of action that I present to you at the end of that session. Career counseling involves gathering information about yourself (through formal and informal career assessment) and identifying several career options to research. Through discussion and support, you reach the point where you have the confidence to decide what direction to take. From there, I help you select a college major or begin the job search process.

How long does career counseling take?

It is difficult to predict how many sessions it will take to reach your goals because you are unique and because I don’t have a fixed process I use for everyone. I estimate 6-12 sessions for career counseling, but I cannot gauge how long personal counseling will take. Be mindful that a personal concern may be the roadblock to your career decision-making and success. Rest assured that I want to help you reach your goals as quickly as possible; and at the same time, I want you to feel that your concerns are handled respectfully and thoroughly. Counseling is a collaborative venture, and I encourage you to ask questions and provide me with whatever information you feel will be helpful to the process.

What are the benefits of working with a Licensed Professional Counselor for career issues?

Counselors graduate with a Master’s Degree that requires 2-3 years of study and an additional 2-3 years of supervised internship, which provides a depth of understanding into the various aspects of the human condition. This gives me a broad scope of the possible causes for your situation as well as a wider range of solutions to your problems. My license and other certifications insure that you are working with someone who agrees to a stringent code of ethics, as well as continuing education. Counselors are monitored by state licensing boards, whereas coaches and consultants are unregulated. Additionally, my degree allows me to utilize state-of-the-art assessment tools not available to coaches and consultants.

Do I really need counseling? I can usually handle my problems.

Everyone goes through challenging situations in life, and while you may have successfully navigated through other difficulties you've faced, there's nothing wrong with seeking out extra support when you need it. In fact, counseling is for people who have enough self-awareness to realize they need a helping hand, and that is something to be admired. You are taking responsibility by accepting where you're at in life and making a commitment to change the situation by seeking counseling. Counseling provides long-lasting benefits and support, giving you the tools you need to avoid triggers, re-direct damaging patterns, and overcome whatever challenges you face.

Why do people go to counseling and how do I know if it is right for me?

People have many different motivations for coming to counseling. Some may be going through a major life transition (unemployment, divorce, new job, etc.), or are not handling stressful circumstances well. Some people need assistance managing a range of other issues such as low self-esteem, depression, anxiety, addictions, relationship problems, spiritual conflicts and creative blocks. Therapy can help provide some much needed encouragement and help with skills to get them through these periods. Others may be at a point where they are ready to learn more about themselves or want to be more effective with their goals in life. In short, people seeking psychotherapy are ready to meet the challenges in their lives and are ready to make the necessary changes.

Do you take insurance, and how does that work?

Career counseling is not a service that is covered by insurance. Sometimes the block to your career success is an emotional/behavioral issue and we may begin psychotherapy. In all cases, payment is due at each session.

Please be aware that if you wish to file a claim with your insurance carrier, a clinical diagnosis is required. I will provide you with a statement to send to your carrier if they will reimburse you for your payments to me. I am not a provider for any insurance company and I therefore do not bill any company directly. You are responsible for submitting claims to your insurance provider.

To determine if you have mental health coverage through your insurance carrier, the first thing you should do is call them. Check your coverage carefully and make sure you understand their answers. Some helpful questions you can ask them:

• What are my mental health benefits?
• What is the coverage amount per therapy session?
• How many therapy sessions does my plan cover?
• How much does my insurance pay for an out-of-network provider?
• Will you reimburse me, the insured, for sessions I pay to my therapist?
• Is approval required from my primary care physician?

Does what we talk about in counseling remain confidential?

Confidentiality is one of the most important components between a client and counselor. Successful therapy requires a high degree of trust with highly sensitive subject matter that is usually not discussed anywhere but the counselor’s office. Every therapist should provide a written copy of their confidential disclosure agreement, and you can expect that what you discuss in session will not be shared with anyone. This is called “Informed Consent.” Sometimes, however, you may want your therapist to share information or give an update to someone on your healthcare team (your Physician, Naturopath, Attorney, etc.), but by law your therapist cannot release this information without obtaining your written permission.

However, state law and professional ethics require therapists to report to the appropriate authorities (including Child Protection and law enforcement), based on information provided by the client or collateral sources in the following situations:

* Suspected past or present abuse or neglect of children, adults, and elders.
* If the therapist has reason to suspect the client is seriously in danger of harming him/herself or has threated to harm another person.

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