Building Therapeutic Bridges: Techniques for Counseling Diverse Clients
In today's fast paced, high stress world, many individuals need counselors to help them cope with the constantly changing demands of daily life. School counselors, therapists, psychologists, and social workers all study approaches to working with a diverse clientele. These professionals recognize the need to strengthen their "toolbox" of methodologies in order to reach those clients who have difficulty with traditional "talk therapy". Although many clients are quite capable of establishing rapport and communication in the traditional counseling environment, other clients, especially children, leave counseling sessions feeling frustrated because they could not find the words to express their conflicting emotions. This presentation will discuss the need to connect the emotional and cognitive sides of the brain as part of the counseling process as well as present methods for counseling diverse clients through the lens of Gardner's Theories of Multiple Intelligences, focusing on the use of poetry, journaling, art, music, movement, nature, interpersonal, and intrapersonal approaches to counseling. In order to experience the connective powers of creative emotional expression, this workshop will provide participants with hand-on opportunities to experiment with clay, painting, journaling and poetry.
Keywords: Counselling, Poetry Therapy, Expressive Therapy, Spirituality
Dr. Cheryl Sawyer
Assistant Professor of Counseling, School of Education, University of Houston Clear Lake
Dr Darline Hunter
Professor of Counseling, University of Houston Clear Lake