Counseling is a professional relationship between a trained counselor and client in resolving personal conflicts and emotional problems. It addresses the emotional, social, work, school, and physical health concerns people may have at different stages in their lives, focusing on typical life stresses and more severe issues with which people may struggle as individuals and as a part of families, groups, and organizations.
Counseling allows individuals to explore their feelings, beliefs, and behaviors, work through challenging or influential memories, identify aspects of their lives that they would like to change, better understand themselves and others, set personal goals, and work toward desired change.
NIRVANA provides counseling sessions for individuals, couples, and families to assist you through life’s challenges.
Need for counseling
- It helps the client to trust and accept actual or impending changes.
- It inspires an individual’s successful endeavor towards attainment.
- It is crucial in crisis intervention and trauma management.
- It involves psychological, emotional, intellectual, and spiritual support.
- It encourages and develops special abilities and the right attitude to cope with life events.
- It assists an individual in planning for educational and vocational choices as per their interest aptitude and intelligence.
Individual counseling is a personal opportunity to receive support and experience growth during challenging times in life. It is usually person to person with the involvement of people in relationships in case of need. It helps an individual to deal with the problems in life like anxiety, depression, anger issues, self -esteem, career choices, and so on. It is designed to help clients to understand and clarify their views of their living space, and to learn to reach their self-determined goals through meaningful, well-informed choices and through the resolution of problems.
Group counseling involves meeting with a group of individuals having similar issues to share their experiences and listen to other’s experiences. It provides a supportive environment to discuss problems and concerns and work towards their goals. The optimum numbers of (8-12) members meet with the counselor facilitating the session which lasts for 50 -80 minutes. It is effective for issues like sexuality, stress, anxiety, addiction, anger and so on where they can have the generalization of the problems that they have been facing and also share each other’s coping.
Couple counseling is synonymously used as marriage counseling. It helps the couples to improve the relationship by recognizing and resolving the conflicts. Both the partners come together to make thoughtful decisions about rebuilding and strengthening your relationship or parting the ways.
Couple counseling strengthens the partnership and gains a better understanding of each other’s needs and resolution of problems like communication problems, sexual difficulties, conflicts about child-rearing, anger, infidelity, substance abuse, domestic violence, blended families, and so on.
Family counseling is designed to address the specific issues affecting the health and functioning of a family, helping the family through a major transition or other mental or behavioral problems among the family members. The major goal of family therapy is to work together to heal any mental, emotional, or psychological problems tearing your family apart (Lee, 2010).
Counselors could help the family members to better deal with child and adolescent behavioral problems, grieving, depression and anxiety, LGBTIQ issues, infertility, substance abuse, and so on. And also to guide a family towards a healthy life, family therapists aim to aid people in improving communication, solving family problems, understanding and handling family situations, and creating a better functioning home environment (Family Therapy, 2017A).
Expressive Art Therapy
Expressive art therapy in the form of psychotherapy that uses the creative process of making art to promote an individual’s physical, mental, and emotional growth and healing. It is the therapeutic use of art-making, within a professional relationship. It begins where the client is functioning and incorporates the client’s strengths, empowers the client by making them an active partner, a collaborator in his or her own healing process. Through creating art and reflecting on the art products and processes, people can increase awareness of self and the others cope with symptoms, stress, and traumatic experiences; enhance cognitive abilities, and enjoy the life-affirming pleasures of making art.
Expressive Arts Therapy has the peculiarity to be not invasive therapy as it facilitates the client’s expression progressively by creating a safe space. It uses the body as a vehicle for self-expression, insight & behavioral change in a safe, affirming, non-judgmental environment. It has the integration of Art, Music, Dance, and Drama in the therapeutic process as the major expression channels of communication.
- Music: It includes singing, playing the instruments, and tuning in to ourselves through music.
- Art: It privileges the use of colors, of drawing, painting, and the use of different materials (clay, acrylics, crayons, etc.)
- Drama: It involves the use of theatre techniques like playback and psychodrama to facilitate personal growth and promote mental health.
- Dance: It utilizes spontaneous dance and free movement rather than teaching the dance techniques into the therapy sessions. It is the psychotherapeutic use of movement as a process, which furthers the emotional, social, cognitive, & physical integration of the individual.
Why Expressive Arts Therapy?
Expressive arts therapy is used with children and adults, as individuals or in groups, to nurture deep personal growth and transformation. It is useful for general improvement of well-being, very effective for anxiety disorders like posttraumatic stress disorder, social phobia and learning disabilities, autism, manage addictions, improving self-esteem and other problems associated with elderly people. One could expect the following through expressive arts therapy:
- It espouses a holistic view of the individual, recognizing the complex interaction between the mind & the body.
- It provides a means for assessment & intervention through body movement, artwork, & verbal expression
- It enhances self-esteem, body image and awareness of movement and body positions
- It improves creativity and imagination, Learn new words and concepts thereby developing constructive coping skills, social skills, health and well-being
- It resolves emotional conflicts by facilitating communication, relationship skills and interpersonal participation.
- It works with feeling of frustration, isolation, anxiety, depression, social phobia.
- It helps to develop strengths such as: healthy self-image, anger management, creativity & playfulness, positive problem solving, effective communication skills, relationship building, & emotional stability..
Gestalt is the German word for whole. Gestalt therapy is a form of psychotherapy which emphasizes personal responsibility, and focuses upon the individual’s experience in the present moment, the therapist–client relationship, and the environmental and social contexts of a person’s life. It is non-interpretive and phenomenological. It focuses on present reality and characteristically the gestalt-oriented process includes change through activity, centrality of present experience, importance of fantasy and creative experimentation.
Gestalt psychotherapy is based on direct, lively, emotionally engaged contact in which the therapist is both with the client and also doing something with the client. It is most commonly understood to be used as individual therapy but it is well practiced in the group as well. The beauty of gestalt psychotherapy is that it works in here and now. Clients are neither reviewed as determined by their past nor reduced to unconsciously repeating prior relationships.
The primary tool of Gestalt therapy is awareness– physiological awareness and psychological awareness. Physiological awareness of what is happening within the body can provide clues to psychological issues. The process of therapy incorporates experimentation, techniques and strategies that serves:
- To clarify and sharpen what the client is already aware of and to make new linkages between elements already in awareness.
- To bring into focal awareness that which was previously only in peripheral awareness, what is needed but systematically kept out of awareness.
- To bring into awareness the system of control of awareness, especially the mechanism of preventing thoughts or feelings from coming into focal awareness.
- To experiment with new ways of thinking, behaving, and being aware including proactive self support such as mediation, relaxation and breath control.
- To enable the client to become more fully and creatively alive and to become free from the blocks and unfinished business that may diminish satisfaction, fulfillment, and growth, and to experiment with new ways of being.
Support Groups and Counseling Supervision
Support groups are the self-help homogenous groups sharing similar issues/problems. The group consists of the facilitator and the participants. The group facilitates each other with emotional support, develop strategies to cope with things together, and get help.
NIRVANA conducts issue-specific support groups as well as the support groups for counselors/psychotherapists. The issue-specific support groups like a support group for anxiety, anger management, depression, and so on. The support group for counselors/ psychotherapists and self-care support groups is continuing under us.
Supervision is the phenomenon of supervising where a supervisor and supervisee are present in a setting to ensure the support and guidance to counselors (supervisee) in Normative, Formative, and Restorative areas. It helps the counselors to track their progress and work on themselves for effective counseling practice.
NIRVANA also offers the supervision services (One-one and group supervision) to provide regular guidance and mentoring support to the counselors thereby providing space to discuss their clients, share their insecurities and challenges as a counselor.
Coginitive Behavioral Therapy
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is the commonest form of psychotherapy pioneered by Dr. Aron T. Beck in 1960’s. It is a combination of two therapies: ‘cognitive therapy’ and ‘behavior
therapy’. The basis of both these techniques is that healthy thoughts lead to healthy feelings and behaviors. CBT aims to help a person identify and challenge unhelpful thoughts and to
learn practical self-help strategies. These strategies are designed to bring about positive and immediate changes in the person’s quality of life. CBT is quite famous for its brief nature and the strategies like homework assignment, graded exposure, imagery, behavior activation and so
on that empowers the clients to actively participate in their therapy process.
CBT is used to treat a range of psychological problems including depression, anxiety disorders such as social phobia, obsessive-compulsive disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder etc. Likewise, it is found to be effective with issues like low self-esteem, uncontrollable anger, irrational fears, substance abuse, such as smoking, drinking or other drug use, compulsive
gambling, eating disorders, marriage or relationship problems, certain emotional or behavioral problems in children or teenagers.
Rei = The Universal, Ki = Life Force
Reiki is the form of hands on healing modality rediscovered by Mikao Usui in Japan. It is not the treatment method as such rather it is a complimentary technique for stress reduction and relaxation that promotes healing. It works in body, mind and spirit by stimulating a person’s own natural healing abilities. It promotes physical, mental and spiritual healing creating many beneficial effects that include relaxation and feelings of peace, security and wellbeing.
Reiki works in conjunction with all other medical or therapeutic techniques to promote recovery. It has been found effective in alleviating issues like pain, stress, job bur out, anxiety, depression, chronic health conditions and for improving self-esteem and quality of life (McManus, 2017).
Reiki on anxiety and pain: The study conducted in Turkey showed that the administration of Reiki was found to be effective in preventing anxiety level as well in controlling preoperative anxiety levels. Also, the positive and lingering effects have been seen in women, especially for obstetrical and gynecological conditions. In abdominal hysterectomy patients, Reiki was effective in reducing pain and anxiety, particularly in a preoperative setting.
Reiki on chronic pain: Among cancer patients, Reiki was found to be effective in relieving pain, anxiety and depression and thereby promoting psychological well being. Also, the quality of sleep, more relaxation, and overall well being was improved with Reiki. In acute coronary syndrome, physiologic indicators of a significant relaxation effect were recorded with Reiki treatments (Friedman et al., 2011).
Reiki on emotional healing: Effective results have been seen with emotional healing.
Even a single session was found to have brought improvements in affect, pain, drowsiness, tiredness, nausea, appetite, shortness of breath, anxiety, depression, and overall well-being of an individual (Dyer et.al,2019).