The central theme of this essay is todescribe an integrative approach to counselling of which I have chosen; The Egan’Skilled Helper’ Model.
Which has three stages. First, clients are helped toexplore their stories. Secondly the client identifies their ‘preferred picture’inclusive of goals/objectives and finally is the development and implementationof strategies for progressing from the present to preferred scenario. Substagesare incorporated within each stage. Egan identifies the skills needed to facilitatethis process as well as the client’s tasks. I will also discuss the potentialadvantages/disadvantages for an integrative approach to counselling. Theoretical integration is the formation ofa new approach to therapy, which derives from methods/concepts from current approaches.Whereas an eclectic approach is one whereby the therapist selects the mostsuitable techniques from a variety of theories/models.
The idea here is thatits tailored to the individual needs of the client, with the therapist dippingin and out of varied techniques/models: “An eclectic counsellorwill employ a range of different theories, methods and practices, according toa client’s needs. This is based on the theory that there is no proof that anyone theoretical approach works better than all others for a specific problem.” (Psychotherapy, 2018) Egan (2009) formedthe ‘Skilled Helper’ Model. Egan integrated problem management into the modeland suggested those who require assistance from counsellors are havingdifficulties managing issues in their lives. The main task of the Helper is toaid the Client in finding appropriate solutions to these issues. Thisintegrative approach is utilised widely within counselling combining TheCognitive Behavioural/Humanistic approaches. It looks at action planning whichis utilised within CBT to solve problems while emphasising the importance ofthe use of the core conditions, immediacy and empathy, which are key ideas ofthe Humanistic approach. This three-stagemodel can be helpful when helping clients to overcome issues, as well as formopportunities.
The aim of Egan’s model is to assist clients in coping withtheir issues; ‘to manage their problems in living moreeffectively and develop unused opportunities more fully’, (Egan., ‘TheSkilled Helper’, 1998, p7-8). This model seeksto empower clients because the client’s own agenda is dominant with the modelstriving to help the client proceed towards action leading outcomes, which arevalued and chosen by them. Egan’s modelisn’t focused on a particular theory, it is a framework for conceptualising the helping process,which is best utilised in exploring issues within the recent past/present.
Egan’s modelsaims to help the client answer three questions;· ‘what’s going on?’ · ‘what do I want instead?’· ‘How might I get what I want?’ Not everyonewill answer all of the above questions, also it may be that clients may want tomove back into questions answered previously. I will write about the model inorder, although Counsellor’s will work with the speaker in any of the stagesmoving backward and forth where appropriate.