Egan’s skilled helper model was created by Dr Gerrard Egan it is an electrical model that provides structure and focus for councillors. The model is a three step design to help people solve any problems they might have. The aim of the model is to achieve lasting continuous change, it is about empowering the client to manage and tackle their own problems. The three steps are: exploration, challenging and how might they achieve what they want. Exploration involves finding out about the client’s life, listening to what they have to say and reflecting back to them in a kind non-judgmental way. Challenging is about challenging what the client has said in the hope they will see it a new more positive way. Action planning involves giving clients some suggestions of how to work through their problems.
Ethical boundaries: these set a clear consistent framework for an effective councillor relationship. Ethical boundaries are about drawing a line between professionalism and socialising. Knowing that line allows the relationship to work at its best and to achieve what it’s set out to do.
Boundaries of the relationship: the aim of boundaries is to avoid favouritism, exploitation and mental harm. One of the hardest types of boundaries is a dual relationship which is a non-professional relationship.
Limitations: being able to address that you may not be suitably qualified for something makes a good counsellor. For example it may be clear that a client is suffering from a mental health problem and so referring them to a psychiatrist would be in their best interests.
Equal opportunities: these are in place to protect everyone involved so both counsellor and client from any form of prejudice or discrimination. This means no one should be judged solely on their age, gender, ethnicity, religion, sexuality, disability and class.
Appropriate setting: this means that the meetings should be arranged in a secure comfortable but mainly professional environment where the counsellor can work the best with the client to get the most out of each session.
Arranging first contact: this is about seeing your client for a short time before beginning a full session with them. The aim of this is too meet your client in a friendly manor before delving deep into personal issues that may be concerning them.
Developing an empathetic relationship: this is about being able to understand what the client is going through and actually wanting to help them through their struggles. It is very important to listen to what the client is saying to fully understand their problems and to create an empathetic relationship.
Immediacy: immediacy is a very powerful counselling skill and is designed to make the client look and realise what is going on between them and the counsellor. It is about using the present situation and realising what is happening. Immediacy can involve some risk in the same way challenging a client can, it is about judging how far to go with things without stepping the line or making the client feel attacked or bullied. Counsellors should be self-aware when using this.
Personal agenda: counsellors need to be aware of their own personal agenda as they could push their own personal views and beliefs onto the client. This could influence the choices the client might make. It is important to guide the…