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COUN 505: Nonverbals, Invitational Skills, Paraphrases/Summaries, Reflecting Feelings, Open/closed questions

Some of the core counseling skills will be explained and described.

Anita Knight

on 19 September 2017

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Transcript of COUN 505: Nonverbals, Invitational Skills, Paraphrases/Summaries, Reflecting Feelings, Open/closed questions

COUN 505: Nonverbals, invitational skills, paraphrases, reflecting, & questions
The Power of Confession & The Healing Process of Opening Up
For example: Polygraph operators gave lie detector tests to criminals; experiences where this facilitated confessions & criminals were thankful.
invitational skills
skills needed in the art of helping; nonverbal & opening
attending skills
helps the client tell their story & reduces your talk time
Contrast good listening with poor listening
Constantly being asked to repeat yourself

Have to ask questions twice because there is no response

Notice a glazed over look in the person's eyes

The person answers a different question besides what you asked


Falling Asleep

What else?
You want to be "all ears."
The 3 V's of Attending
VOCAL Qualities
VERBAL Tracking
VISUAL Eye Contact
Think about the last time you felt you were not being heard.
Case Example: The Case of Jade

Jade was sexually assaulted by a friend of friends.
When Jade shared this experience with her boyfriend
he was uncomfortable talking about this and changed the
subject. She tried to talk with her sister and father as well
as she had just recently experienced the trauma and wanted
to process with someone. They told her it was her fault that
she should not have given the perpetrator any cues that she
was interested. Jade felt that she was not heard or understood and
felt so alone. Then, during her psychology class Jade's professor
discussed sexual assault. He noticed that Jade began crying in class
and so after class he sent her to the counseling center.

When I talked with Jade I asked her the miracle question...
Often times before coming to counseling. People are following
rules they have learned in their family of origin:
Be quiet!
Children are to be seen & not heard!
"Put a smile on your face" or "Turn this frown upside down!"
Don't feel/ suppress your feelings.
"What I say goes."
Other Rules that say, "Don't think."
"Because I said so."
"We pay you to work not to think."
When people come into counseling all of these rules are reversed. There are a new set of rules.

Here we are asking people to:

Speak, feel, and think!

Invitational skills & nonverbals create an atmosphere that invites this.
Young breaks invitational skills down into two categories:
Nonverbal Skills
Opening Skills
Body position & posture that communicates openness & a safe place
Verbal skills that encourage people to open up and share
The Challenge of True Listening.
Lots of distractions & competing thoughts
Trying to identify the problem & the treatment or solutions.
Distracting thoughts about:
similar problems I have had in
the past
how to help
what to say next
Purpose for Listening:
Healing Power of Telling the Story
Gain insight into individual's worldview & can
design specially tailored interventions for them.
Resist the temptation to give advice, provide solutions,
bombard with questions, or affirm. Put your own thoughts & ideas on the back burner. Listen & hear before judging or jumping to conclusions.
Rule of Helping:
Seek first to understand &
then to be understood.
ability to be genuine; consistence between a person's words, feelings, & behaviors
A question to ask yourself:
Are you personally authentic?
Counselors need to show congruence and interest in facilitating the therapeutic dialogue.
QUARELY face people
PEN body posture
EAN forward
YE contact
Egan's Skilled Helper Model
SQUARELY face people
The positioning of your body communicates something
If there is a desk or table between you it may seem like a barrier.
OPEN body posture
Crossed arms and legs are characteristic of defensiveness
& may communicate that you are not available or open to the other person's thoughts and feelings.
LEAN forward
Closed posture also communicates
Expresses interest
Expresses commitment to listen
Leaning Backwards also communicates
EYE contact
Regular eye contact with occasional glances away.
Keep a relaxed posture and manner
Remember: You are communicating even when you are not talking.
You cannot not communicate. Even silence communicates.
Caveat: Nonverbal behavior is not explicit & can sometimes
be a reflection of an extraneous variable.
Tread with caution
"First and most important indicator of listening (Young, 2009)."
Eye contact communicates interest and credibility.
Lack of eye contact may be seen as lack of listening.
If you sense the client is uncomfortable with direct eye contact due to cultural
reasons, bring this up in discussion and inquire.
"Attentive Silence" can be a powerful tool. That communicates
the willingness to sit with the client & give them the room to
develop their thoughts.
Reflect emotions
Indication of listening
Tone of Voice
Facial Expressions
Cultural Differences
Emotional Intelligence Test
Mayer, Salovey, & Caruso Emotional Intelligence Test
When there is a lack of congruence in communication this may
be an important clue
Carl Rogers theory emphasized the role of congruence &
that was considered one of the goals to therapy.
Physical Space/Distance
Personal Bubble

Cultural differences

Italian's comfortable "in your face."

One to four feet for Americans.
Appropriate touch

May be therapeutic

May be a ritual at greeting or termination

Use caution especially with sexual abuse history

Use caution with opposite sex
Should not impose intimacy
Should not communicate a negative message
Opening Skills
verbal & nonverbal means to prompt the client to keep talking (Ivey, 2007).
Encouragers are described by Young as:

1. Door Openers

2. Minimal Encouragers
Door Openers
"A non coercive invitation to talk (Young, 2009)".
Door Closers
Evaluative Responses:

What were you thinking?
What is your problem?
Why did you do that?
Great Job!
Counseling students tend to ask too many questions.

Why ask why?

Why questions tend to make people defensive.

Think about the last time someone asked you why...

You have to explain yourself or give a reason for your actions or words.

Better to act as an investigator and uncover motivations as you go.

Additionally, people may not know why.
Ask leading questions
Ask "Why?"
Interrogate with questions
Revert to ?'s when you you feel stuck
Use closed questions generously
Overuse questions

Don't rush to fill it
Try drinking water
Try counting
Give the client "space"
For Example:
Who's on First?
Turn to the person next to you, decide who will be the counselor & who will be the client
Take two minutes and practice using your invitational skills
Remember your "To Don't List"
Also, remember to begin with a door opener & use minimal encouragers throughout

Use one of these topics:

How I chose my present job
A trip I took that was very important to me
My relationship with a close friend
A topic of the client's choice
The problem of a friend or acquaintance whose role the client assumes.
SWITCH, now change roles
Reflecting Feelings
Learning to reflect content
Skills used specifically by counselors & other helping professionals
Going above & beyond invitational skills:
Expressing the client's feelings in a concise way
The last reflecting skill

Cannot accurately summarized until you have
checked in regarding feelings & meaning

Helps synthesize a client's thoughts & feelings at a given point in the counseling session

Helps them organize thoughts and decide "where they are"

There are layers to reflect

First, you reflect content, then feeling, then meaning

Can communicate understanding that is not judgemental or evaluative

The process of "walking alongside"

Sometimes reflection of content is called mirroring

Prompts more info without interrogating

It is also an evidence of tracking
How Do You Paraphrase without sounding like a parrot?

STEP 1: Listen to the client's narrative

STEP 2: Repeat back to them a concise & non-evaluative
synopsis of their content

For example: It is like the second round of highlighting. If you
are studying for an important exam, then you may read the text and high
light the high points. When it comes time to study you may review the highlighted
portions again. The day before the exam you may highlight (in a different color) or underline the key points in the highlighted text. The day of the exam you may just look
at the points that were highlighted in the second round. These are the most essential to passing the exam- probably the most important points in a nut shell.

These are also the points that you would probably put on note cards if you are making note cards.

Paraphrasing is the same way. You only say or repeat the most important aspects of the client's story in a concise manner so as not to intrude on their "story time."
Paraphrase the following:

Graduate Student:

"I am feeling very overwhelmed by the amount
of work I have to do for my classes, the stress I am dealing
with at work, and also trying to meet my wife's needs for
time and attention at home!"

"Today was a stressful day. I have a lot of demanding clients and
they seem to always want to push for more time. Or, maybe it is me
feeling more impatient and anxious to stay on time. I just don't know.
I used to look forward to going to work."
I have worked for this company for over ten years. I just found out that they plan to lay me off
within the next six months because of downsizing and the economy. I cannot believe this. I feel
like I have given my life to them and now this is a slap in the face. I do not want to tell my wife, then she will just get worried. What am I going to do?"
When to Paraphrase?
While clarifying the story/content
After attending skills
Sampe Sequence:

Door Opener:
What brings you here today?

Sarah: I am feeling stressed constantly. Work is getting sort of intense and then there is more work to do at home. You see, my parents are struggling, and I am paying most of the bills and going to school-It is getting more and more stressful at home...

Minimal Encourager:

Sarah: My parents stay home and I work each day, and by the time I get home they have more stress to share with me.

Clarifying Question:
So, what is the source of the stress at home?

Sarah: Um, I guess it would be my parents expectations that I pay for school and make enough to cover most of the bills at home. I'm alwasy working overtime to make more, but then not having time to study...

Open Ended Question:
Would you walk me through a typical day for you?

Sarah: Well, I wake up at about 6:00, feed the cat, take a shower...

So, I am hearing you say that starting at 7am you work a 12 hour day, then you go home and work some more & struggle to get enough sleep.

Simply recite facts
Use verbatim reflections continuously
Miss the essence of the thought/feeling
Paraphrase before using attending/invitational skills
Use a judgemental tone
Benefits of Paraphrase
Communicates Empathy
Communicates tracking & understanding
Helps client re-evaluate & organize thoughts
Practice Time

Think of a family story or a recent incident that you can tell a brief story about

Decide who will be the counselor 1st

Use the invitational sequence & reflecting skills (Door opener, minimal encourager, clarifying question, open question, paraphrase, reflect feelings, reflect meaning, summarize.

Emotional Intelligence
Mayer, Salovey, & Caruso revised their definition of EI to include 4 brances (Knight, 2008; Mayer, Salovey, & Caruso, 1997)

1. Ability to perceive emotions
2. Ability to access emotions in order to facilitate thought
3. The ability to use to understand emotions
4. Ability to regulate emotions to promote growth
Important for counselors to develop
Undervalued skill, but important
Similar to other skills yet distinct

Identifies & feeds back the emotional tone of the story to the client (Ivey, 2007).

Similar to a paraphrase with emphasis on the emotion versus facts/content

Good sumaries also contain reflection of feelings
It is very important to practice these skills to gain competence
Example: Testimony from Amanda Russo (Ivey & Ivey, 2007; p. 167-168)
Conduct a "Positive Asset Search: Building Empathy on Strengths." Ask the client what some of their strengths are. Ask them to share a story with you about each one of the strengths.

Turn to the person next to you; practice for five minutes using the invitational & reflecting skills. Then switch.
On the same continuum as the
other skills

May be for a whole session

Or even SEVERAL sessions

Includes verebal & nonverbal elements

Summary Example (Ivey & Ivey, 2007)
"The visit went well. I've pretty much decided to go back and finish college. But how will I pay for it? I've got a job now, but I'll have to move to part-time& I'm not sure that they will keep me. Getting all of this finished will be difficult. It is kind of scary."

Counselor Summary:
"In the last interview we talked about your going back to school and it sounds like it really went well & you really want to do it. But at the same time now it is a little scary when you think of all of the financial issues. Have I heard what's been happening correctly?"


Bring creative materials for Tuesday

Return at 1:30 after lunch to meet with your Clinical Consultant

We are learning to resist the urge to rush in and give advice or solve the problem....
A little girl came home from school and said to her mother, "Mommy, today in school I was punished for something that I didn't do."

The mother exclaimed, "But that's terrible! I'm going to have a talk with your teacher about this ... by the way, what was it that you didn't do?"

The little girl replied, "My homework."
Break if time allows.
Syllabus overview.
Full transcript