Figure 2.5: The Three Selfs
Incongruence occurs when there is a mismatch between any of these three components of the self: the ideal self (what you would like to be), the self-image (what you think you are), and the true self (what you actually are). Self-esteem is negative when there is incongruence between ideal self and self image. Anxiety and defensiveness occurs when there is incongruence between self-image and true self. Consistency between ideal self, true self, and self-image results in a positive self image.
GOAL OF COUNSELLING AND ROLE OF THE COUNSELLOR
The goal of person-centred counselling is to encourage clients to be brave enough so that they are able to explore, identify or confront any fears, perceptions or issues that have been burdening them. In a condition full of positive regard and empathy, clients become increasingly willing to change and grow. As clients become more fully functioning, they will have greater acceptance of their self.
The role of the counsellor is to provide a safe and trusting climate or conditions wherein the client will feel safe enough to explore his or her self. In contrast to the others in the real world that accept the clients only with certain conditions, the counsellor instead creates a nurturing condition that encourages the client to discover his or herself. The counsellor acts as a facilitator that knows how to guide the client through the process of self-discovery by hearing, observing and reflecting client’s verbal and non-verbal language. The counsellor is not directive in the sense that he does not suggest or interpret why clients feel as they do or what they should do. By using verbal techniques such as reflection, asking questions and rephrasing, the counsellor will assist clients in becoming more aware of their feelings and thought, thus gain insights to their own experiences and find their own self.
Carl Rogers is best known for his contributions to therapy. His therapy has gone through a couple of name changes along the way: He originally called it non-directive, because he felt that the therapist should not lead the client, but rather be there for the client while the client directs the progress of the therapy. As he became more experienced, he realised that, as "non-directive" as he was, he still influenced his client