Welcome to the AIPC Online Article Library. The library includes over 300 articles focusing on counselling, life effectiveness skills and mental health. We invite you to explore our range of articles by clicking the category links above, or using the drop-down menu on your right. To learn more about AIPC, visit www.aipc.net.au

Identifying and Replacing Stress-inducing Attitudes in Clients

How willing are your clients to acknowledge unhelpful attitudes and beliefs that they may have? Some of these may be unexamined ways of thinking about themselves and their lives that were given to them by parents and other early caregivers. They may not really be the clients’ attitudes and values, but they were put there so early on, it is hard for clients to tell that they do not belong with them. You can recognise them because they are often distorted, exaggerated, highly self-critical, or self-defeating “tapes” that re-play over and over again in the client’s head, causing personal anxiety, self-doubt, depression, and of course, major stress. »

Understanding and Enhancing Interpersonal Communication

We’ve been doing it since the first humanoids appeared on the planet, so by now – hundreds of thousands of years into our existence – we have some basic notions about what governs our communication. We understand that our human interactions are purposeful, not random. We observe that we make choices, that there is usually room for another meaning from what we intend (so communication is ambiguous), that any communication has both a content and a relational dimension, that power is usually involved, and that it is inevitable, irreversible, and unrepeatable. In this article, we look at those in turn, and also note what the practical (skills) implications are for you. »

The Fine Art of Active Listening

How well-developed are your communication skills? The Carnegie Foundation claims that personal qualities account for 85 percent of the factors contributing to job success. The Harvard Bureau of Vocational Guidance, meanwhile, notes that 66 percent of people fired from their jobs were fired because they failed to get along with people (Edith Cowan University, n.d.). The truth is, you cannot not communicate. Whether you are saying something with words or merely making a face to express your feelings, you are communicating. Much of what we do as human beings – from how we hold our arms to the tone and pitch of our voice or even how close we stand to someone – is all a communication for those who know how to read it. The more competently you communicate, the better your chances are to be a pos... »

Time Management and Wellbeing

If we want to understand our relationship with time, we have only to look to how we talk about it. In the more relaxed Spanish-speaking cultures, people say, “Anda el reloj”: “Time/the clock walks”. In the German culture where emphasis is on things working, it functions. In the precise French culture, time marches. In English, of course, our watch – and time in general – runs, as in “running out”. It should be no surprise, then, that in the English-speaking world, we view time as a precious commodity: we can “buy time”, live on “borrowed time”, or try to “save” time. If we don’t manage to organise ourselves in relation to it, we are accused of “wasting” time or “spending” too much of it on something unimportant. »

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A Case Using Brief Psychodynamic Therapy

Wendy is a 54 year old woman who has two adult children and has been married for twenty-nine years. Her husband, Steve, has recently and unexpectedly informed her that he no longer loves her and that he wants a divorce. Wendy was shocked to hear this...

The Fine Art of Compassion

Imagine this scenario: you are keen to get a particular job and an opportunity for it comes up. You prepare meticulously for the interview, but somehow, it doesn’t go well. The interviewers don’t seem to warm to you, and you know in your heart that y...

Men and Emotions: From Repression to Expression

In our previous article (read it here), we asked why men do not seem to express emotion as easily as women do. Was there some pathology, or should we just put the differences down to male-female tendencies? We identified Dr Ron Levant’s notion o...

The Fine Art of Compassion

Imagine this scenario: you are keen to get a particular job and an opportunity for it comes up. You prepare meticulously for the interview, but somehow, it doesn’t go well. The interviewers don’t seem to warm to you, and you know in your heart that y...