The Who, What, Where, and Why of 21st Century Counseling
eCounseling, or online counseling, is one of the most modern forms of counseling. It is perfect for those who have time, geographical, or physical barriers in place to attending face to face sessions. Because video conferencing software is now so advanced, a lot of individuals and couples alike now prefer this method of counseling.
Who Is it For?
Online counseling services can be used by anybody. However, it is most suitable for:
· Those with irregular, hectic work schedules.
· Those who travel a lot.
· Those with physical disabilities.
· Those in foreign countries or rural areas.
· Those who prefer staying in their ow home.
Online counseling can only be provided to minors if they have parental consent, however.
What Do I Need?
To use online counseling, you need:
· A computer, laptop, or mobile device with a high speed internet connection.
· A camera and microphone, which is usually installed as standard on any of the above devices.
· Video conferencing software, which your counselor will point you to (it is often Skype).
· The login and ID details, which your counselor will provide you with.
When Can I Have Counseling?
You have to make sure you do your research when it comes to choosing a counselor. Make sure that they are properly qualified and registered with a professional association such as the California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists. Also make sure that you find out what their counseling philosophy is, and that it is a philosophy that you can align yourself with. Once you have found someone, you can contact them and they will be able to arrange a time and date that is convenient to you.
Where Should I Have Counseling?
You should remember two things in terms of location:
1. Make sure it is private, where there are no disturbances. Switch your television, radio, and phone off, and make sure nobody disturbs you during your session.
2. You may have to be within the legal jurisdiction of the counselor. You should be provided with a document that highlights where your counselor can and cannot practice.
Why Opt for Online Services?
You may live in an area where there are no counselors available, or perhaps the counseling they offer is not suitable for your particular needs. Through online counseling, you are far less limited in terms of which counselor and type of counseling you can use. If you have been considering getting help for an issue you have been dealing with for some time now, but you live in an area where everybody knows everybody, then getting the help of a counselor that is outside of your geographical area could also be beneficial. Or perhaps you are agoraphobic, and leaving your home simply isn’t an option. The most important thing to remember is that there is help out there for you. Furthermore, seeking the help of a counselor means that you are ready to make important changes in your life, becoming empowered to seek the happiness we all deserve.