Relationship Counsellor jobs(Also known as Marriage counsellor, Psychotherapist, Relationship coach)
A relationship counsellor is someone who offers advice and guidance to couples, married or otherwise, or encourages the client to find answers to the problems themselves. The counsellor can operate as an intermediary in an attempt to reconcile differences between two people, or to improve generally the prospects in the relationship. The term 'relationship counsellor' is often used generically to describe a wide range of quite distinct specialisations within the area of counselling. Broadly, it is used to describe somebody who speaks to couples in an attempt to repair or better their relationship. Under this umbrella description, the different types of counsellor are described below:
- Relationship counsellor
- Relationship coach
Salary'Standard' counsellors can expect to earn between £20,000 and £30,000, depending on location and experience. Earnings potential generally improves as the professional’s reputation and skill set develops. Additional, formal, certified accreditation by professional bodies can improve the potential conditions for earnings growth. Those candidates who decide to move into psychology or sex therapy can expect slightly more in terms of top earnings scope. Service users usually pay a per-hour or per-session rate, which can range from £90 per hour, up to around £300 per hour.
- Ensure clients have an understanding of the processes involved.
- Support the individual during the stressful process of reconciliation or improvement.
- Work at a pace which is acceptable for the client’s budget and expectation.
- Communicate clearly.
- Adapt techniques to the demands of the individual’s personal circumstances.
QualificationsService users (and any potential employer, in the case of a larger practice) will usually demand that a relationship counsellor is in possession of professional accreditation certificates. A professional qualification, such as a degree or a diploma, is one that is recognised by an industry body. The most widely recognised are those issued by the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP). The minimum term of study required for a diploma is one year of full-time study, or 2-3 years of part-time study. A period of supervised vocational placement is normally necessary after completion of the course. Psychotherapy normally demands a university degree.
- Be able to communicate clearly.
- Be able to develop suitable practical methodologies in a limited time frame.
- Have an understanding of the principles and application of technique necessary to overcome a variety of issues.
- Offer support and understanding to clients.
- Be able to allow service users to see their own mistakes and embrace their own solutions.
- Be sympathetic to vulnerability, lack of confidence and potentially harmful psychological conditions.
Working ConditionsThe working environment varies greatly. Whilst most counsellors have an office or clinic which is their main base of operations, many offer a telephone service (which may or may not be based from the clinic or from home). In addition, some offer an email respondent service, where clients pay per email response. Some counsellors choose to offer a home visit service, and some often travel to offices or customers' workplaces to administer their counselling service on site. In terms of health and safety, counselling classes as a medium-risk occupation, due to the close proximity of the counsellor to the public, and the fact that the service user can often be experiencing a compromised emotional state. This could in turn lead to violence or aggressive behaviour towards the relationship counsellor.
ExperienceOnce a basic accreditation has been achieved in the area specific to the field of practice the counsellor wishes to administer, they then are able to offer their services. However, the array of available and prospective fields of specialisation is vast, so many relationship counsellors embark on a never-ending quest for knowledge. There is always something new to learn, and those who work in this industry note this as a key reason why the job never becomes boring.
EmployersThe most widely recognised organisation offering relationship counselling in the UK is Relate. They have 150,000 service users per annum, and a total of 77 service centres operating simultaneously at a given time. Relate is a registered charity, and although it is non-profit making, it should be noted that the service is not free.
Stephen Hedger is one of the most respected and prominent life coaching and relationship coaching specialists working in the UK today. He has practised for ten years, and now offers assistance and coaching to a variety of clients, including other counsellors and psychologists.