Things you won’t hear often in graduate counseling programs


In my last post I made mention of Dr. Langberg’s presentations last Monday night. One of her talks was entitled, “Ten Things About Counseling You Don’t Usually Hear in Graduate School.” At some point we may be able to upload video of that talk but just to whet your appetite, here are a couple of her 10 items,

  • Counseling is not nice. Most people get into the counseling business because they want to help people and because others have indicated that they have a gift for listening. Without being negative about the work of counseling, Dr. Langberg reminded us that to counsel with others is to invite garbage into your life. People don’t come to counseling to talk about the good things…
  • Similarly, the stuff of counseling is contagious; it will change you.
  • Counseling will expose you. It will expose your limits of patience, rationality, and love. It will expose your baser reasons for being a counselor.
  • Christian counseling is doing God’s work. It is not our work.
  • Christian counseling is doing God’s work for him (not for ourselves or others).

Just a taste. But she concluded with this call,

Listen acutely. Study avidly. Be the Word.

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7 Comments

Filed under Christianity, counseling, counseling skills, Diane Langberg

7 responses to “Things you won’t hear often in graduate counseling programs

  1. This is why I couldn’t do it. It sends runners through my thoughts like kudzu.

    • Piper, not everyone is called to do this work. Some are called, like you, to be prophets (in my humble estimation) so as to call the rest of us to attention to the heart of God.

  2. JRJ

    I hope you can get the talk up for us to listen to…needed these words of reality this week. I am in the home stretch of a two year 62 credit hour program, graduating in May and some recent clinical experiences had me questioning whether I could be in this profession because my patience, rationality and love were pushed to their limit. Good to know they are hazards of the job and not necessarily indicative of one’s inability to do the job. :)

  3. I work as a mediator. “Mediation” could be substituted for “counseling” and Dr. Langberg’s comments would be just as true.

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  6. Nick

    Is there a time frame in which you would hope to get the video up?

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