Interpersonal Process Recall

Interpersonal Process Recall - EDO-CG-94-10 ERIC Digest...

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Overview Some recent models of counseling supervision have tended to be task oriented, emphasizing such competen- cies as case conceptualization and the attending skills of the counselor. However, attention is also needed to increase counselor self-awareness regarding the therapeu- tic relationship. Interpersonal Process Recall (IPR) is a supervision strategy developed by Norman Kagan and colleagues that empowers counselors to understand and act upon perceptions to which they may otherwise not attend. The goals of IPR are to increase counselor aware- ness of covert thoughts and feelings of client and self, practice expressing covert thoughts and feelings in the here and now without negative consequences, and, con- sequently, to deepen the counselor/client relationship. Discussion IPR is built around the notion that counselors’ selec- tive perceptions of surface issues block their therapeutic efforts more than any other variable (Bernard, 1989). IPR is based on two elements of human behavior: that people need each other and that people learn to fear each other. Kagan (1980) proposed that people can be the greatest source of joy for one another. However, because a person’s earliest imprinted experiences are as a small being in a large person’s world, inexplicit feelings of fear and help- lessness may persist throughout one’s life. These fears are most often unlabeled and uncommunicated. This combination of needing but fearing others results in an approach-avoidance syndrome as persons search for a “safe” psychological distance from others. As a result, people often behave diplomatically. Kagan (1980) believed the “diplomatic” behavior of counselors is expressed in two ways: “feigning of clinical naivete” and tuning out client messages. Feigning clini- cal naivete, most often an indicant that counselors are unwilling to become involved with clients at a certain level, occurs when counselors act as if they did not understand the meaning behind client statements. Tun- ing out occurs most often among inexperienced counse- lors who are engrossed in their own thought process, try- ing to decide what to do next. The result is that the coun- selor misses messages from the client, some of which may seem obvious to the supervisor. Thus, a wealth of mate-
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Interpersonal Process Recall - EDO-CG-94-10 ERIC Digest...

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