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Del Morrill, M.S. C.C.H

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A Center for Counseling & Hypnosis
Tacoma, Washington, USA
(253) 752-1506

Handling a Therapistís Own Problems

Question

I haven’t been working with weight control because I can’t even handle my own weight.  Some people think I should do it any way. But I feel you shouldn’t work with what you haven’t experienced. What do you think?

Answer

My clients see a happy, overweight and elderly woman who has confidence in herself, loves her work, and has miracles walking out of her office weekly. They don't seem to mind at all that I'm not perfect looking.  In fact, they seem to have more confidence in me because they know I've struggled with some of the things they struggle with, and have had a great journey along the way.  They know I understand depression, because I've been there.  They know I understand weight issues, because I've been there.

However, I don't have to have "been there' to understand a lot of other problems. I had a great childhood and never experienced physical or sexual abuse; yet, I have great results with my many clients who have gone through those horrors.

I make use of those experiences that I do have, by sharing with my clients when it seems appropriate.  With weight management clients I make use of humor by telling them the names of my body’s layers: where they came from and from what they protect me.  It doesn't discourage them - it encourages them. I also share how I used awareness and hypnosis to drop my first 30 pounds. 

There are some therapists I won't go to, not because they are overweight, but because they are sloppy in their appearance and look like they hate themselves and their weight.  I have confidence in therapists who look like they care for themselves, who are positive and seem to like themselves.

On the other hand, I do take seriously the areas with which I’m not qualified to handle, such as schizophrenia; or that I have some prejudicial attitude toward, such as abusers. I refer such clients to other therapists who specialize in those areas.

Finally, it's all in how you carry yourself and use this stuff, not in trying to be a perfect, ideal specimen in order to be an effective therapist.   

 

 
 

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