Personal problems are a part and parcel of human existence, and if not addressed immediately, they not only cause harm to the victims themselves but also to the people that surround them. Financial woes, long-term unemployment, difficulties in relationships, and other factors would cause even the strongest person to tip over and lose control of themselves. Perhaps you’ve noticed someone closest and dearest to you going through this ordeal. And in times like this, lending them a hand and sign-up a counseling referral on their behalf will save them from the dark times that they’re in right now.
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What is a Counseling Referral?
Counseling referrals bear similarities with setting an appointment for a doctor’s consultation and advice. They collect patient, and client information and the reason for their visit before the patient or client sees the counselor itself. Aside from that, it also puts the patient or client’s name on the waiting list as well. These are usually done with the use of counseling referral forms.
A counseling referral is the first step in seeking professional advice for people who are going through or are experiencing difficult times. Psychological trauma from bullying and other personal problems leads to serious consequences if counseling is not done to help its victims. Often, the victims themselves unaware that they need help or would deny the fact they need such help in the first place, and referral for counseling are usually done on by someone they know.
Counseling Referral Forms: Helping People With Their Struggles
Counseling referral forms are one of the various forms and documents the counseling programs use. Counseling programs are designed to help people solve problems that are too overwhelming for them to solve alone. Problems that, if left unchecked of unattended, may cause harm to the victims and the people around them. Counseling programs are formulated for various kinds of problems and “inner demons” that most people struggle with. And detailed in the list below are some of the issues that counseling programs tackle.
- Substance Abuse and Addiction: Drugs, alcohol, and tobacco are addictive substances that most people abuse these days. According to the data from the National Institute on Drug Abuse, alcohol ranks highest in terms of usage by different age groups. It is due to its ease of access and availability. Alcoholism, otherwise known as alcohol abuse, is the most common form of substance abuse and is caused by a lot of factors such as personal and family problems. Substance abuse counseling helps those who are drowning in addiction by showing them solutions to the problems that led them to abuse these substances.
- Depression, Anxiety, and Other Mental Health Issues: Mental health issues affect one in four people around the world, according to the World Health Organization, with over making it among “the leading causes of ill-health and disability worldwide.” Depression, anxiety, and other mental health issues are the results of personal problems that victims are often struggling to solve. Mental health counseling is a clinical practice that helps victims address these issues, where psychologists conduct regular counseling sessions with their patients until they are restored to their normal mental state.
- Career and Academics: Employees and students often face problems that are too much for them to solve or handle. The loss of motivation to keep on going or the confusion on which career path to take next are some of the common problems that students and employees face from time to time. Low performance may also count as one of the things that will warrant counseling to take place, as well. Employee counseling and Student counseling are some of the types of counseling that addresses these kinds of issues.
- Marriage and Relationship Issues: Marriages, as well as other relationships, experience sailing through rough waters from time to time. And when the going gets tough for couples, they would often choose to leave their issues unresolved rather than save what is worth saving—their marriage and relationship. However, there are still those who see a chance to save their relationship and seek advice from someone who could see solutions amid the issues that cloud the couple’s judgment.
Why Counseling Referrals are Necessary
Personal problems are labyrinths or unsolvable mazes for the afflicted. They envelop their victims in darkness and prevents them from seeing the solutions right in front of them. Personal problems affect even the best, the strongest, and the brightest among us. They’re caused by a lot of factors and leads to a lot of severe mental health problems if not addressed or given attention right away. Suicidal tendencies, substance abuse, and losing sanity are among the severe problems that result from ignoring one’s problems.
Counseling referrals help victims and their loved ones, see a way out of their problems. By seeking professional advice from counselors, victims and their families will be able to know the root cause of their problems, the best options to take in lessening them, as well as concrete solutions. Aside from those, they will also know the ways or steps on how best to avoid them and how to prevent them from becoming worse. More importantly, victims themselves would be able to realize how dwelling too much on their problems instead of solving them negatively affects their relationship with everyone around them.
From a counselor’s point of view, counseling referrals let them know enough about the patient or the client and know from which point to start from in helping them. Counseling referrals are required when seeking help or advice regarding matters that concern employees, students, mental health, and relationships. And through this that counselors can diagnose a patient or client’s problems, provide options and solutions, as well as the negative effects of not solving problems.
Counseling Begins in the Community
In the past, the job of counseling usually fell in the hands of family members and spiritual leaders. Priests and pastors of the Christian Faith, Rabbis in Judaism, Imams in Islam, and spiritual leaders in other religions, played an important role in guiding and giving important life advice to the faithful. While, parents, grandparents, and senior family members also played a major role in teaching as well as guiding the younger generation on how to be better members of society.
Later on, clubs and other civic organizations then joined the role of shaping the youth into good citizens of the country. Sports coaches and scoutmasters alike, not only teaches young boys and girls on how to navigate society’s maze but also how to play life’s game itself. And together with our families and our churches, all of them played a huge role in shaping us to who we are now from bottom to top, inside and out.
How Do You Refer a Friend for Counseling
People who are going through tough times may and may not notice that its already affecting them negatively. Often, before these problems grow big and harm themselves or everyone around them, a friendly intervention, as well as a helping hand, is absolutely needed. If you know someone closest to you who is sailing through rough seas, then perhaps signing them in for counseling is probably the biggest favor you could give as a friend. Listed and enumerated below are the steps on how to refer an ailing friend for counseling.
Step 1. Pay Your Local Counseling Center a Visit
Visiting a local counseling center is the first step in getting help for your friend. It is through this that you will know what necessary steps—steps on how to encourage to seek help and advice— you should take in order to help your friend with the problems that he or she’s going through. In this step, you need to get to know the program that the counseling center offers to their patients as well as the persons running them. It is also in this step that you learn how to sign a referral form on your friend’s behalf as well.
Step 2. Encourage Your Friend About Getting Help
Registering your friend for counseling will all be put into waste if he or she doesn’t want to go through it in the first place. The only way for your friend to voluntarily undergo counseling is by giving a little push of encouragement. To encourage your friend to undergo counseling, you must honestly show a genuine concern about your friend’s well-being as well as make them realize how it negatively affects him or her as well as everyone around. Aside from that, your friend must keep his or her trust in you; otherwise, you will lose your only chance of getting him or her the help that they needed.
Step 3. Submit a Counseling Referral Form
Counseling referral forms are one of the many forms used in different counseling programs. Whether they be for seeking career advice or for breaking a bad habit like excessive alcoholism, signing patients for professional advice begins by referring them first. Like most referral forms, patient information must be written and detailed so that the counselor would have the slightest hint on what to expect. Aside from patient information, the reason for the patient’s visit must be detailed, too as well. After signing the counseling referral form, submit it to the counseling center to list your friend on the waiting list.
Step 4. Your Presence and Support Matters
Professional advice or counseling is not enough to help your friend with what’s he or she is going through. What he or she needs the most during this time of uncertainty is your presence, as well as your unwavering support. Believe it or not, showing up for counseling makes people anxious as they don’t know what will happen, nor do they know what to expect. But by accompanying them in every session, you are not only showing how a good friend you are to him or her, but rather, telling them that he or she is not alone in this battle, and you always got his or her back covered.
Life’s journey is not always about blue skies and fair weather. Sometimes, life itself must pass through rough seas and turbulent skies from time to time. And as its passengers, we sometimes choose to cut the journey and dwell on the latter instead—personal problems and struggles. But, life’s journey is not ours to take alone. Instead, our families, closest friends, and good samaritans are also aboard the same boat with us, ready to lend a helping hand in times of difficulty and need. They’re also there with you whenever you need someone to lend an ear for your woes as well as to give you support and counsel.
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