Jan. 19th 2015
There are many problems clients face in today’s busy world. And with that there are many tools and skills that can be used to work on the problems. Something to take into consideration is that many problems are multi-faceted not just a single problem. Because of this many of the tools and skills have been designed to work together. There are the issues we face as we grow up, developmental problems. As early as infancy we learn trust, or mistrust depending on how we are raised. This is a very important time, trust is a key building block to forming relationships. As an adolescence, we learn to refine our relationships and with that we learn a large group of things that effect the way we interact with people. This group is as follows: autonomy vs. shame or doubt, initiative vs. guilt, identity vs. role confusion, intimacy vs. isolation, industry vs. inferiority, and integrity vs despair. These allow us to learn to be proud or embarrassed, to feel superior or inferior and so on.
Situational problems are those that generally happen unexpectedly and cause major changes such as, accidents, violent crimes, or disasters. An example of a situational change, I was in a car accident in 2004. I was coming home from work late one night, traveling on a dark country road with only two lanes of traffic. There were freshly plowed fields on either side of the road as well. A car with no lights suddenly passes me, gets in front of me and slams on their brakes. I swerved to avoid hitting them and with that found the soft plowed dirt with my passenger tires. This caused me to slide putting huge pressure on the driver tires. They pop causing the vehicle to roll over about one hundred yards where the vehicle came to a stop on its top. I managed to walk away with only minor injuries, but this opened my eyes to where my life was heading and where I wanted my life to go. There were several problems I needed to address and work through.
Abraham Maslow identified the hierarchy of needs, which states that you must build and develop basic needs before self-awareness can be achieved. The hierarchal model starts with physiological needs such as food and water. Next is safety needs, feeling protected and secure. Social needs like love and acceptance are next. Independence and recognition are part of the esteem needs then there is self-awareness.
Two issues that are very similar to one another are societal changes and environmental influences. Societal changes are more group oriented while environmental influences are more singular. Both though, affect the client’s surroundings such as living situation. Societal changes can also affect traditions and values. As I talked before about the car accident I was in, related to that was my drug use. After the accident I realized that I was heading down a dark path by using drugs. To stop using I decided to move out of the area. The area I was living in was a small town and there was not much to do other than drugs. I moved south and to a much larger town. The change in environment made a huge difference in my life. I found love, sobriety, and began a family. Without the change in environment, those things would not have had a chance to bless my life.
Now that we have talked about the problems or issues, let us discuss the tools and skills we use to work on the issues and problems. When we first meet someone we send out non-verbal messages, these are things like our hair and clothes, personal hygiene. This says a lot about us, it can be a positive message or it can cast a negative light on us as a person. Other non-verbal messages are as follows but not limited to: work space, living space, facial expressions and so on.
The more profound of the tools and skills is verbal messaging. The inflection of our voice, the tone, the volume, these all play