Saturday, February 2, 2013

Journal: Impacts of Becoming a Mental Health Counselor

            The profession of mental health is changing, growing, and evolving by leaps and bounds.  The developers of psychology have shown great strides in the advancement on mental health forefront.  Counselors are defined as those who support individuals or groups of individuals with various problems focused on helping the mental health of people through various programs and services.  Becoming a counselor requires exemplary listening skills, note taking, and responses that are positive in nature.  Building a bond between the client and the counselor is important as well because then the client will feel comfortable in discussing matters that can be uncomfortable, awkward, or private.  There are several types of counselors including marriage, grief, job, diet and exercise, and drug just to mention a few, either way each one of these improves life in different ways. 
            Living in America we are faced with many ethnicities, races, and cultures.  Based on this diversity, comes optimism as well as energy.  With that comes an increased number of people who suffer from mental health issues each year.  All ages and all races can be effected by mental illnesses.  This breeds a need for mental health counselors.  Positive mental health is a good basis for success in family, society and the community. 
            As a mental heath professional I hope to gain knowledge that I can use to make that impact on those described above.  Life experiences will aid in counseling those with trauma and crisis, because Walden University provides students with real life scenarios for which to build a strong foundation in counseling.  For someone who has experienced trauma and crisis understanding the client/patient’s feelings and fears can help him or her relate to the one who does not understand where these feelings are stemming from.  On a personal note, as the education continues I hope to gain more knowledge on how to release some of the traumatic events that have occurred, grow as a person and become more mentally healthy.  Self reflection here is important too, acceptance that you cannot change your past but learn from it, to barrow a quote from one of the more popular Disney movies The Lion King Rafiki is talking to the now adult Simba and says “Oh yes, the past can hurt. But the from way I see it, you can either run from it, or... learn from it” (, 2012). 
            The most important positive thing I hope to gain most out of becoming a mental health counselor is to see that one moment when that one client sees that he or she with correct direction can change for the better.  Providing positive influence and a role model for those who struggle with everyday life.  The field which I am hoping to work in will deal with one on one counseling with those in law enforcement, I also would like to create a support group for spouses and partners of police officers to educate them on the signs of trauma and how to cope when they refuse counseling. 
            As the field of mental health evolves, so will the need for mental health counselors.  Improving on the foundations that were learned as an undergraduate will clearly pave the way for a successful career as a trauma and crisis counselor.  The Walden staff will bring real life experiences to the discussions and show the future counselors how to handle stressful situations and traumatic events in a way that is both helpful to the client as well as the clinician.  Having this as a part of my education will help me help others, which is why I chose this profession in the first place. 

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