What is it that makes a counsellor or psychotherapist competent?
In Competence and Self-Care in Counselling and Psychotherapy, Gerrie Hughes offers a framework for understanding what being competent means for individual practitioners, both generally and in moment-by-moment work with clients. Divided into two sections, Part One, The Competent Self, and Part Two, Care of the Self, the book explores care and replenishment of the self as an essential requirement for maintaining competence.
The Competence Framework presented here suggests that the three elements of Practitioner, Client and Context are essential factors for making good therapeutic choices, as well as offering a structure for reflection, either individually or in supervision. The eight principles that elaborate on these elements provide a route to explore competence that is relevant for any theoretical orientation and appropriate for practitioners at any stage. The reader is encouraged to make their own exploration of a number of factors that influence competence and to identify development of the self as both a necessary preparation for therapeutic work and as a continuing outcome of being a therapist. In addition, Hughes emphasises the importance of having a sound ethical framework and utilising professional structures as well as examining the contribution of supervision to the development and maintenance of competence.
This book is an ideal choice for counsellors, psychotherapists, supervisors and trainers who wish to maintain a robust standard of practice, and for those employing them.