Personal counseling is a process of self-discovery and growth. It helps us to learn more about ourselves. It can also increase our self-confidence, improve our relationships, help us to achieve our educational goals, and aid us in making good decisions for our emotional, intellectual, physical, and spiritual well-being.

Counseling is also a process that works toward changes in thought, feelings, and/or behaviors. People generally utilize counseling services to help resolve a personal problem which has not responded to other efforts. Everyone has problems at some time in their life. Counseling is not a "quick fix" to problems which people have tried very hard to resolve on their own. The process involves patience and taking the opportunity to think and talk about one's life experiences and individual issues, which can eventually lead to changes in thoughts and/or behaviors. Change will be the result of commitment and dedicated work by both the student and counselor.

Counselors are not advice givers and will not tell you what to do. Instead, they are trained to help you find your own answers which will be meaningful in your life.

What Is the Counseling Process?

The initial meeting will provide an opportunity for you to tell the counselor what your needs and concerns are and what you hope to accomplish through counseling. You will be able to ask questions about the process and benefits of counseling, about the limits of confidentiality, and about the many other services available. If your needs would best be met by another department within Montana Tech or by an agency or professional in the community, your counselor will help put you in contact with the appropriate individuals.

The initial meeting is also a primary avenue to get to know one another. It is important to build a trusting relationship with the counselor in this early stage. As trust develops, it becomes easier to talk about feelings, needs, and the changes you wish to make.

Personal commitment to your own growth is crucial to success. You can enhance your development by taking risks, such as disclosing information that is difficult to talk about, being open, honest, and actively participating. You can continue this process between sessions by focusing on the changes you want to make and working on specific assignments made by your counselor.

Just as you and your counselor work together to identify your needs and plan your counseling sessions, the ending of counseling should be planned together whenever possible. When you think you are ready to end counseling, discuss this with your counselor.

Source: Texas A&M's Student Counseling Service, used with their permission.

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1300 West Park Street
Butte, MT 59701
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