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Practical Counselling and Helping Skills


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Table of Contents

PART ONE: INTRODUCTION What is counselling and helping? Create communication skills and feelings Create mind skills The lifeskills counselling model PART TWO: THE RELATING STAGE Pre-counselling contact Listening skills Show understanding skills Start the counselling and helping process PART THREE: THE UNDERSTANDING STAGE Clarify problems skills Assess feelings and physical reactions Assess thinking Assess communication and actions Agree on a shared definition of problems PART FOUR: THE CHANGING STAGE Plan interventions Deliver interventions Interventions for thinking - 1 Interventions for thinking - 2 Interventions for communication and actions - 1 Interventions for communication and actions - 2 Interventions for feelings Negotiate homework Conduct middle sessions End and assist client self-helping PART FIVE: FURTHER CONSIDERATIONS Relaxation Interventions Multicultural counselling and helping Gender-aware counselling and helping Technology mediated counselling and helping - Jane Evans Positive counselling and helping Ethics in practice and training Supervision Personal Counselling and Continued Professional Development

About the Author

Richard Nelson-Jones was born in London in 1936. Having spent five years in California as a Second World War refugee, he returned in the 1960s to obtain a Masters and Ph.D from Stanford University. In 1970, he was appointed a lecturer in the Department of Education at the University of Aston to establish a Diploma in Counselling in Educational Settings, which started enrolling students in 1971. During the 1970s, he was helped by having three Fulbright Professors from the United States, each for a year, who both taught students and improved his skills. During this period he broadened out from a predominantly client-centred orientation to becoming much more cognitive-behavioural. He also wrote numerous articles and the first edition of what is now The Theory and Practice of Counselling and Therapy, which was published in 1982. In addition, he chaired the British Psychological Society's Working Party on Counselling and, in1982, became the first chairperson of the BPS Counselling Psychology Section. In 1984, he took up a position as a counselling and later counselling psychology trainer at the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology, where he became an Associate Professor. He continued writing research articles, articles on professional issues and books, which were published in London and Sydney. As when he worked at Aston University, he also counselled clients to keep up his skills. In 1997, he retired from RMIT and moved to Chiang Mai in Thailand. There, as well as doing some counselling and teaching, he has continued as an author of counselling and counselling psychology textbooks. A British and Australian citizen, he now divides his time between Chiang Mai and London and regularly visits Australia.


Richard Nelson-Jones is a master of counselling and training and this excellent text is a tribute to what he describes as an 'integrative theoretical framework and model of practice'. Each chapter is packed with insights on the counselling relationship and the practical application of counselling skills. I value it as a resource for teaching communication skills to social workers and counsellors. It is well written, accessible, has numerous case examples and an attention to the languaging of counselling that is grounded in Richard's expertise as a counselling practitioner. -- Andrew Thompson
This sixth edition of 'Practical Counselling and Helping Skills' is a formidable achievement. Its comprehensiveness, clarity of style and structure and its attention to the latest developments in the field make it an outstanding resource for experienced practitioners, trainers and trainees alike. What is more, Richard Nelson-Jones' reflectiveness on his immense experience over many decades and in differing cultures gives the book a quality of generous inclusiveness which is rare in the counselling literature. Admirers of such contrasting figures as Carl Rogers, Aaron Beck, Albert Ellis and Gerard Egan will all find much to value in its pages -- Brian Thorne
This is a key textbook for anybody wanting to read an influential summary of all the major approaches and theories of counselling.

Detailed, up-to-date explanations and very clear writing makes the book useful to a wide audience: from students and researchers at all levels, to practitioners and their clients.

-- Violet Fyffe
As I read the 6th edition of Richard Nelson-Jones' Practical Counselling and Helping Skills (PCaHS) I recalled the excitement I experienced when I read the first edition. That was a time when a skills-based approach to counselling was a topic of fierce controversy. It was refreshing to have a book which extended the model from helping to living. Through subsequent editions, Nelson-Jones' basic three-stage helping model has endured because of its utility across a wide range of practice contexts. Many of the ideas which once seemed radical are now accepted widely. New developments, notably thinking and feeling skills, and positive psychology, have been incorporated. PCaHS has always been distinguishable from more basic books on the topic by both its comprehensiveness and its unity. It is this unity of organisation alone which makes me reluctant to think of it as a 'handbook'! It will be a valuable resource for all who want to be challenged to go beyond the simplistic notions of helping currently being fostered by some promoters of life-coaching. -- Jim McLennan

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