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As a clinical mental health counselor you consciously use certain skills, such as open-ended questions, paraphrasing, reflection of feeling, and summarizing to demonstrate to the client that you heard, understood, and empathized with what he or she said. These skills help to initiate rapport with the client, creating a safe and therapeutic environment where change can occur. These skills help the client to initiate change as you guide him or her through the counseling process.

To what extent are these skills part of the art and/or science of clinical mental health counseling? After you apply some of these skills to a client scenario, think about how you might answer that question.

To prepare for this Discussion:

·         Review Chapter 6 and the Levitt article, focusing on the different types of counseling microskills; how active listening can enhance the other microskills, such as paraphrasing; and how each microskill could be used within a counseling session.

·         Review the “Vignettes: Counseling Microskills Discussion” document in the Learning Resources and select one to use for this Discussion.

·         Think about how you could use an 1)open-ended question, 2)paraphrasing, and 3)reflection of what the client is feeling for the vignette you selected.

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