The Professional Helper: The Fundamentals of Being a Helping Professional

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9780398078904: The Professional Helper: The Fundamentals of Being a Helping Professional

The professional helper should be a teacher, a mentor, a motivator and a guide to assisting the helpee find solutions to her life situations. Most clients have within themselves the answers to most if not all of their life situations; quite often, what they need is someone to assist them in sifting through and evaluating the various possible responses to the situation. The objective of The Professional Helper is to provide a basic understanding of various kinds of helping relationships and characteristics that an effective helper must possess. In this book, the terms helper and counselor are used interchangeably and also refer to numerous other helpers such as social workers, case managers, and rehabilitation specialists. Although this book primarily discusses helping from the standpoint of being a formal professional process, this should not be interpreted to mean that informal helping is less important than professional helping. The fact is that it takes both types of helpers for humans to survive. While some texts attempt to classify helpers by certain professions and/or academic and license/certification, this text is more concerned with identifying the qualities, both personal and professional, that the helper should have in order to be an effective helper. Such qualities include integrity, compassion, self-confidence, patience, availability and, most relevant, being an effective listener. Readers will be given suggestions in detail for becoming an effective listener, such as asking questions, observing body language, listening for logic and the tone of one's voice, and listening to the responses to your questions. Other topics include understanding cultural differences and disabilities, as well as understanding the differences of individual and family counseling. The Professional Helper will be a beneficial text to counseling students, as well as social work students, human resource students, psychology students, sociology students and human relations students.

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