chapter-3-exercises.docx - Running head CHAPTER 3 EXERCISES...

This preview shows page 1 out of 23 pages.

Unformatted text preview: Running head: CHAPTER 3 EXERCISES 1 THE THERAPEUTIC DIALOGUE: COMMUNICATION AND RELATIONSHIP-BUILDING SKILLS Chapter 3 EMPATHIC PRESENCE: TUNING IN AND LISTENING Part II of The Skilled Helper deals with the communication skills needed to engage clients in a therapeutic dialogue. The quality of the dialogue affects everything in the problem-management process. This chapter has three parts: the importance of dialogue, the skill of attending or tuning in, and the skill of active listening. THE IMPORTANCE OF DIALOGUE As useful as dialogue might be in human communication, it is not that common—at least in its fullness. Helpers need to become skilled in dialogue themselves and in helping clients engage in dialogue. EXERCISE 3.1: UNDERSTANDING AND PERSONALIZING THE FOUR REQUIREMENTS OF TRUE DIALOGUE 1. Read the section in Chapter 3 that describes the requirements of a true dialogue—turn taking, connecting, mutual influencing, and co-creating outcomes. 2. Think of an important and, if possible, relatively recent conversation that went poorly. 3. Which elements of dialogue were missing or done poorly and therefore might have contributed to the conversation’s poor outcome? ________________________________________________________________________ ______________________________________________________________________________ 4. Next, think of an important conversation that went well. 5. Which elements of effective dialogue might have contributed to the success of this conversation? ________________________________________________________________________ CHAPTER 3 EXERCISES 2 ______________________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________ ______________________________________________________________________________ 6. Share your findings with a learning partner. 7. Rate yourself (1-7) on your competence in engaging in dialogue and generally conducting serious conversations in the spirit of dialogue. _____ EXERCISE 3.2: DIALOGUE IN EVERYDAY LIFE Not all conversations need to be true dialogues. However, most conversations would probably be more productive if they were conducted in the spirit of dialogue. Often enough, dialogue in its fullest sense would make a big difference to the outcome of the conversation. 1. In this exercise, have a conversation with your learning partner. Choose any topic that has some substance and is agreeable to both of you. Talk for about 10 minutes. Make a video 2. of the session. After ten minutes play the video and debrief the conversation in the light of the requirements of dialogue. The subject of the conversation. What was the conversation about? What substance did it have? Did it have enough substance to warrant a serious dialogue? ______________________________________________________________________________ ______________________________________________________________________________ ______________________________________________________________________________ In what ways did it live up to the requirements of dialogue? ______________________________________________________________________________ ______________________________________________________________________________ CHAPTER 3 EXERCISES 3 ______________________________________________________________________________ In what way did it fail to live up to these requirements? ______________________________________________________________________________ ______________________________________________________________________________ 3. Continue the conversation for another 10 minutes. Video it. Make every effort to make it a dialogue. After 10 more minutes stop and review the video with your partner again. Discuss what progress was made. What positive outcome, if any, did the two of you cocreate through the conversation? Determine what it would take to make dialogue or the spirit of dialogue second nature to your communication style. ATTENDING: VISIBLY TUNING IN Your posture, gestures, facial expressions, and voice all send nonverbal messages to your clients. The purpose of the exercises in this section is to make you aware of the different kinds of nonverbal messages you send to clients through such things as body posture, facial expressions, and voice quality, and how to use nonverbal behavior to make contact and communicate with them. It is important that what you say verbally is reinforced rather than muddled or contradicted by your nonverbal messages. There are two important messages about nonverbal behavior in this chapter. First, use your posture, gestures, facial expressions, and voice to send messages you want to clients to hear, such as, “I’m listening to you very carefully” or “I know what you’re saying is difficult for you, but I’m with you.” Second, become aware of the messages your clients are sending to you through their nonverbal behaviors. Learn how to understand them without over-interpreting them. CHAPTER 3 EXERCISES 4 7. Name two things you could do to improve how you are present to others. ______________________________________________________________________________ ______________________________________________________________________________ ______________________________________________________________________________ EXERCISE 3.5: OBSERVING AND GIVING FEEDBACK ON QUALITY OF PRESENCE In the training sessions, make sure that your nonverbal behavior is helping you work effectively with others and sending the messages you want to send. This exercise, then, pertains to the entire length of the training program. You are asked to give ongoing feedback both to yourself and to the other members of the training group on the quality of your presence to one another as you interact, learn, and practice helping skills. Recall especially the basic elements of visibly tuning in summarized by the acronym SOLER. Here is a checklist to help you provide that feedback to yourself and your fellow helpers. Review the criteria for giving useful feedback found in the Introduction to the Exercises. •How effectively are you using postural cues to indicate your willingness to work with the client? •In what ways do you distract clients and observers from the task at hand, for instance, by fidgeting? •How flexible are you when engaging in SOLER behaviors? To what degree do these behaviors help you be with the client? •How natural is it for you to tune in to the client? What indications are there that you are not being yourself? •To what degree is your psychological presence reflected in your physical presence? •What are you like when you miss the mark? •What are you like when you are at your best? CHAPTER 3 EXERCISES 5 The ongoing question is: What do I have to do to become more effectively present to my clients both physically and psychologically? Your posture and nonverbal behavior are an important part of your presence, but there is more to presence than SOLER activities. There are the values and spirit you bring to your encounters with your clients. ACTIVE LISTENING Read the sections on active listening in Chapter 3 of The Skilled Helper. Effective helpers are active listeners. When you listen to clients, you listen to their stories. Some of the elements of these stories are: •their experiences, what they see as happening to them; •their behaviors, what they do or fail to do; •their affect, the feelings and emotions that arise from their experiences and behaviors; •the core messages in their stories; •their points of view expressed in their stories, including the reasons for their points of view and the implications for holding any given point of view; •the decisions they are making, together with the reasons for and implications or possible consequences of those decisions; •their intentions and proposals, that is, the goals they want to pursue and the actions they intend to engage in; •the wider context of their stories, points of view, decisions, and intentions; •any particular “slant” they tend to give to any or all of the above. CHAPTER 3 EXERCISES 6 Helpers listen carefully in order to respond with both understanding and at times, as we shall see later, some sort of invitation to self-challenge. Let’s start by having you listen to yourself. EXERCISE 3.6: LISTENING TO YOURSELF AS A PROBLEM SOLVER In this exercise you are asked to “listen to yourself” in retrospect as you worked through some important problem situation or spotted and developed some unused opportunity. Retell the story to yourself in summary form. Example. Here is Acantha’s story in summary form. “What I have to say is retrospective. I don’t believe I was thinking this clearly back then. I got drunk during a football game and don’t recall clearly what happened afterwards. I woke up in a guy’s room. I knew I had been violated. I had no intention of having sex. At this point I became very aware of what I was doing. My intention that day was to relax and have fun. My assumption was that no one I was with had any ulterior motives. In one way I was not thinking straight. I should never have drunk too much, but at the time I did not say that to myself. I never made a decision to throw caution to the wind, but I did by letting others help me get drunk. My decision-making abilities were lost. As soon as I woke up I began gathering my resources. I went for a long walk and thought things through. I decided not to confront anyone except myself. Although I hoped that I would not be pregnant, I began thinking how I would handle a pregnancy. Finally, I thought I needed to talk all of this through with a friend or, perhaps better, an objective counselor.” Now jot down a few highlights regarding how you manage your problem situation. 1. Debrief Acantha’s story by answering the following questions. What was the issue? ___________________________________________________________________________ What were her key experiences, that is, what happened to her? ___________________________________________________________________________ CHAPTER 3 EXERCISES 7 ___________________________________________________________________________ What points of view of hers were involved? ___________________________________________________________________________ ___________________________________________________________________________ What decisions did she make? ___________________________________________________________________________ What emotions did she experience and express? ___________________________________________________________________________ ___________________________________________________________________________ What did she do to cope with the problem or develop the opportunity? ___________________________________________________________________________ 2. Provide a case from your own life. 2. Debrief by answering the above questions. EXERCISE 3.7: LISTENING TO MYSELF AS A PERSON WITH FEELINGS AND EMOTIONS Since emotions are strong motivators for good or for bad and permeate stories, points of view, decisions, and intentions, we turn to an exercise on emotions. If you are to listen to the feelings and emotions of clients, you first should be familiar with your own emotional states and your own style of emotional expression. This exercise is about your emotional style. 1. A lot has been written recently about “emotional intelligence.” Find an article that summarizes current thinking about emotional intelligence and its place in people’s lives. You will soon discover that, for many, the concept of emotional intelligence covers a lot more than emotions. It is an answer to the question: What does adult maturity look like? CHAPTER 3 EXERCISES 8 But let’s start with feelings and emotions. Answer the following question about yourself as an “emotional” person. What role do emotions play in your life? __________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________ How effectively do you control or manage negative emotions such as anger or hurt? Which emotions are hardest for you to manage? What happens? ___________________________________________________________________________ What role do positive emotions such as eagerness, joy, and contentment play in your life? ______________________________________________________________________________ ______________________________________________________________________________ Comment on this statement: There is no such thing as a perfect emotional style. ______________________________________________________________________________ ______________________________________________________________________________ ______________________________________________________________________________ 2. A number of emotional states are listed below. You are asked to describe what you feel when you feel these emotions. Describe what you feel as concretely as possible: How does your body react? What happens inside you? What do you feel like doing? Consider the following examples. Example 1 Accepted: When I feel accepted, · I feel warm inside. CHAPTER 3 EXERCISES 9 · I feel safe. · I feel free to be myself. · I feel like sitting back and relaxing. · I feel I can let my guard down. · I feel like sharing myself. · I feel some of my fears easing away. · I feel at home. · I feel at peace. · I feel my loneliness melting away. Example 2 Scared: When I feel scared, · my mouth dries up. · my bowels become loose. · there are butterflies in my stomach · I feel like running away. · I feel very uncomfortable. · I feel the need to talk to someone. · I turn in on myself. · I’m unable to concentrate. · I feel very vulnerable. · I sometimes feel like crying. 1. Choose three of the emotions listed below or others not on the list. Try your hand at the emotions you have difficulty with. It’s important to listen to yourself when you are experiencing emotions that are not easy for you to handle. 2. Picture to yourself situations in which you have experienced each of these three emotions. 3. Then, as in the example above, write down on a sheet of paper what you experienced. CHAPTER 3 EXERCISES 10 4. What feelings are you most likely to avoid? Why? 1. accepted 2. affectionate 6. attracted 7. bored 11. desperate 12. disappointed 17. hurt 18. Inferior 22. joyful 3. afraid 23. lonely 5. Anxious 8. competitive 9. confused 13. free 24. loving satisfied 29. shocked 30. shy 4. angry 14. frustrated 19. interested 25. rejected 31. superior 10. defensive 15. guilty 16. hopeful 20. intimate 21. jealous 26. respected 27. sad 32. suspicious 28. 33. trusting The reason for this exercise is to sensitize yourself to the wide variety of ways in which clients express and name their feelings and emotions. Diversity in emotional expression style is the norm. Although the feelings and emotions of clients (not to mention your own) are extremely important, sometimes helpers concentrate too much, or rather too exclusively, on them. Feelings and emotions need to be understood, both by helpers and by clients, in the context of the experiences and behaviors that give rise to them. On the other hand, when clients hide their feelings, both from themselves and from others, then it is necessary to listen carefully to cues indicating the existence of suppressed, ignored, or unmanaged emotions. LISTENING THOUGHTFULLY TO CLIENTS’ STORIES Listening thoughtfully means identifying the key elements of clients’ stories -experiences, thoughts, behaviors, and feelings -and the relationships among them. Thoughtful listening is a function of empathy. EXERCISE 3.8: LISTENING FOR CORE MESSAGES CHAPTER 3 EXERCISES 11 Core messages are the main points of a client’s story. The ingredients of core messages are key experiences, key thoughts, and key behaviors, together with the key feelings or emotions associated with them. In this exercise, you are asked to “listen to” and identify the key experiences and behaviors that give rise to the client’s main feelings. 1. Listen very carefully to what the client is saying. 2. Identify the client’s key experiences, what he or she says is happening or has happened to him or her. 3. Identify the client’s key thoughts—what is going through his/her mind. 4. Identify the client’s key behaviors, what he or she is doing, not doing, or failing to do. 5. Identify the key feelings and emotions associated with these experiences and behaviors. Example: A 27-year-old African American man is talking to a minister about a visit with his mother the previous day. He says, “I just don’t know what got into me! She kept nagging me the way she always does, asking me why I don’t visit her more often. I kept asking myself where did all of this come from. I knew I should have tried to reason with her or just say nothing, but, as she went on, I got more and more angry. (He looks away from the counselor down toward the floor.) I finally began screaming at her. I told her to get off my case. (He puts his hands over his face.) I can’t believe what I did. I called her a bitch. (Shaking his head.) I called her a bitch several times and then I left and slammed the door in her face.” Key experiences: Mother’s nagging. Key thoughts: What have I done to deserve this? I should keep my mouth shut. Key behaviors: Losing his temper, yelling at her, calling her a name, slamming the door in her face. CHAPTER 3 EXERCISES 12 Feelings/emotions generated: He now feels embarrassed, guilty, ashamed, distraught, disappointed with himself, remorseful. (Note carefully: This man is not at this moment expressing anger. Rather he is talking about his anger, the way he lets his temper get away from him.) Now do the same with the following cases. 1. A 40-year-old Hispanic woman, married with no children, has had several sessions with a counselor. She went because she was bored and felt that all the color had gone out of her life. In a later session she says this: “These counseling sessions have really done me a great deal of good! I’ve worked hard in these sessions, and it’s paid off. I enjoy my work more. I actually look forward to meeting new people. My husband and I are talking more seriously and decently to each other. At times he’s even tender toward me the way he used to be. Now that I’ve begun to take charge of myself more and more, there’s just so much more freedom in my life!” Client’s key experiences: _____________________________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________________________ ____________________________________________________________________________ Client’s key thoughts: _____________________________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________________________ Client’s key behaviors: _____________________________________________________________________________ CHAPTER 3 EXERCISES 13 _____________________________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________________________ How does the client feel about these experiences, thoughts, and behaviors? _____________________________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________________________ 3. A 20-year-old Asian American male college student who has volunteered to work with struggling high school students finds that he is learning more than he imagined he would. He tells his college advisor what it’s like: “These kids deal with problems I have never had to face. Some days we’ll start by working on some bit of homework but before we’re done they’re talking about being afraid of the gangs on the way to and from school. This one kid starts and ends each day by helping his mom who has MS. In the morning he gets her up and dresses her and in the evening he gets her ready for bed...
View Full Document

{[ snackBarMessage ]}

What students are saying

  • Left Quote Icon

    As a current student on this bumpy collegiate pathway, I stumbled upon Course Hero, where I can find study resources for nearly all my courses, get online help from tutors 24/7, and even share my old projects, papers, and lecture notes with other students.

    Student Picture

    Kiran Temple University Fox School of Business ‘17, Course Hero Intern

  • Left Quote Icon

    I cannot even describe how much Course Hero helped me this summer. It’s truly become something I can always rely on and help me. In the end, I was not only able to survive summer classes, but I was able to thrive thanks to Course Hero.

    Student Picture

    Dana University of Pennsylvania ‘17, Course Hero Intern

  • Left Quote Icon

    The ability to access any university’s resources through Course Hero proved invaluable in my case. I was behind on Tulane coursework and actually used UCLA’s materials to help me move forward and get everything together on time.

    Student Picture

    Jill Tulane University ‘16, Course Hero Intern