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Resistance - How do you deal with it?

If you are in the 'helping professions' - a counselor, a teacher, a therapist, a social worker - you will have had to deal with resistance. 'Resistance' is a catch-all term, and a rather negative one. It loosely describes the behavior of clients who don't (or won't) actually cooperate - even if they outwardly eagerly agree that your suggestions or strategies will definitely benefit them. What can you do about it?

Resistance and disagreement

Of course, there are times in therapy, counseling or advice sessions when there is straightforward disagreement about the best way forward. This is not 'resistance', and the way to deal with it is through further discussion and negotiation. Resistant behavior usually occurs after such disagreements have been settled and the way forward agreed. But for some reason the resistant client does not comply with what was agreed.

Resistance doesn't mean people don't want to get better

At first sight, such non-cooperative behavior seems merely contrary. It's easy to fall into the trap of thinking that the client 'doesn't really want to get better'. And it's very frustrating for the therapist, who can see that the resistant client may be cutting off their nose to spite their face, as the saying goes. But it's clear that insistence or threats only make resistance worse. A different approach is required to get past resistance to success.

The importance of detachment in dealing with resistance

The first step is to take a step back. Resistance is one of those phenomena that tempt a therapist or other helper to become over-involved in their client's problems and lose their sense of perspective. Of course, you want your therapy to 'succeed', but you always have to remember that it's not about you. It's about the client and what they need. And when you observe 'resistant' behavior, it's a sign that your client needs something.

Looking for the 'true purpose' of resistance

The second step is to identify the real need that underlies the behavior. All behavior, conscious or unconscious, is designed to meet the needs of the organism. Some behaviors are more effective and appropriate than others, but everyone will do the best they can with what they know at the time. But they don't always consciously know what they know. So some behaviors can seem quite inexplicable. Like resistance.

Developing creative solutions for resistance

This means that therapists need to develop a sort of forensic skill to determine what the purpose of the resistance really is. And they need to develop their astuteness in devising ways to lead the client almost unwittingly into more effective solutions without rousing the resistant reaction. This is because resistance, being unconscious, cannot be directly confronted.

Hypnosis can enhance your skills in dealing with resistance

Dealing with resistance is an audio hypnosis session for therapists which provides a powerful and effective way to enhance these forensic and therapeutic skills. Using the most up to date understanding of psychological motivation and hypnotic intervention, this session will help you easily learn and assimilate a new approach to resistance.

Dealing with resistance will give you real life examples on which to model your own work, and stimulate your creativity in developing custom solutions to individual cases.

Download Dealing with resistance and forge ahead with your clients.

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