Carl Rogers and the Counsellor relationship

On our ‘Counselling Page’ we use Rogers quotation below to highlight the importance of the Counsellor relationship in Simply Counselling. Getting the relationship right is the heart of what we do!

  • “In my early professional years I was asking the question: How can I treat, or cure, or change this person? Now I would phrase the question in this way: How can I provide a relationship which this person may use for his own personal growth?”

Here are some more of Rogers’ quotations on the Counsellor relationship:

  • “When I look at a sunset as I did the other evening, I don’t find myself saying, “Soften the orange a little on the right-hand corner, and put a bit more purple along the base, and use a little more pink in the cloud colour.” I don’t do that. I don’t try to control a sunset. I watch it with awe as it unfolds. I like myself best when I can appreciate my staff member, my son, my daughter, my grandchildren, in this same way. I believe this is a somewhat Oriental attitude; for me it is a most satisfying one.”
  • “When a person realizes they have been deeply heard, their eyes moisten. I think in some real sense they are weeping for joy. It is as though they were saying, “Thank God, somebody heard me. Someone knows what it’s like to be me”
  • “When the other person is hurting, confused, troubled, anxious, alienated, terrified; or when he or she is doubtful of self-worth, uncertain as to identity, then understanding is called for. The gentle and sensitive companionship of an empathic stance… provides illumination and healing. In such situations deep understanding is, I believe, the most precious gift one can give to another.”
  • “The kind of caring that the client-centred therapist desires to achieve is a gullible caring, in which clients are accepted as they say they are, not with a lurking suspicion in the therapist’s mind that they may, in fact, be otherwise. This attitude is not stupidity on the therapist’s part; it is the kind of attitude that is most likely to lead to trust…”
  • “When I have been listened to and when I have been heard, I am able to re-perceive my world in a new way and to go on. It is astonishing how elements that seem insoluble become soluble when someone listens, how confusions that seem irremediable turn into relatively clear flowing streams when one is heard. I have deeply appreciated the times that I have experienced this sensitive, empathic, concentrated listening.”
  • “When you are in psychological distress and someone really hears you without passing judgement on you, without trying to take responsibility for you, without trying to mould you, it feels damn good!”