Individual counseling assists you in clarifying your concerns, examining the solutions you have tried, and developing new coping strategies. During the first meetings, our counselor will gather information about your personal, intellectual, and emotional style, as well as your relationships and academic status. This assists the counselor in determining which counseling strategies will be most helpful to you. Using this information, you and your counselor will develop goals for counseling. As counseling progresses, new goals may be formed as well. The counseling process may include learning new problem-solving or coping skills, increasing self-understanding, exploring life patterns, and gaining a better sense of yourself.
It is important to think about what you would like to gain from your counseling sessions. It may be helpful to jot down a list of events, relationships, and feelings that you think are related to your concerns. Take time before each session to think about what you want to accomplish during that meeting. This is your counseling process, so be active in deciding how to use the time. As issues or feelings (either positive or negative) come up during counseling, it may be beneficial to share them with your counselor. We can only help if you want it, we're here for you!
Group counseling may help you in different ways. Through group counseling you will not only be able to address current concerns most important to you, you will also be able to identify with others who are experiencing similar concerns, increase your self-awareness through obtaining genuine and honest feedback from others, and learn to respect individual differences as you learn to affirm you own uniqueness.
In group counseling, you are able to gain immediate feedback from other group members and the leader(s). In a safe and respectful environment you can learn how others perceive you, increase your self-awareness and focus on the aspects of your life you wish to change. Examining your response to others' feelings and experiences will also help you increase self-awareness.
Group counseling also gives you an opportunity to try out new behaviors, to express feelings you may have been hesitant to express, to assert yourself in new ways, and to experiment with new ideas. As you experience trust and security in the group, you will feel more free to take risks. You need to determine how active and involved you want to be. Being active means expressing your reactions to what another person is saying or doing, sharing your concerns, listening to another person, asking for clarification when you don't understand, giving support and comfort, and seeking support for yourself. It's unrealistic to expect yourself to be verbally active during every session. Sometimes you may feel more reflective than active and prefer to listen and to consider new dimensions of your personality.
It generally takes several sessions before members of a group begin to develop sufficient trust to be open and honest enough to disclose their concerns and feelings. Thus, patience is needed to give the group time to develop. There will never be any pressure for you to speak, but we respectfully ask that you do not become disruptive in whispering, talking, or causing distraction to any person speaking during the sessions.
Think about what you would like to get out of the group. Take time before each session to define your expectations for that session. Don't be surprised if your goals continue to change throughout the group process. As your self-awareness increases and as you listen to other group members, you will discover other issues which might become more important than the original ones. If you are not getting what you want out of the group, talk about it with the group members. Group counseling is an excellent place to experiment with different ways of behaving and expressing yourself.
The goal of the Student-Athlete Counseling & Tutoring Program is to improve the quality of life of student-athletes that want to progress positively in their behavior, economic status, and academic future.