Like so many things today, the answer to that question depends on whom you ask. What that means to one person, means something entirely different to another person. For this reason, I can only give you what it means to me.
Let’s start with the dictionary and the word “counselor”. When you look it up, the very first definition given is, “One who gives counsel; an adviser.” Now, if by some chance, you’re not clear on what “counsel” is, the dictionary defines it as, “1. Mutual exchange of advice, opinions, etc.; consultation. 2. Advice given as a result of a consultation; an opinion on what to do; guidance.”
In conversations with others who do what I do, or something similar, I have been warned against using the term “counselor”. The fear seems to be that it will be misinterpreted as meaning “therapist” which requires proof of training and, in most cases, licensing by the state one is practicing in. For this reason, I was advised that using the term “life coach” would be safer. (A term that is totally unappealing to me.) To me, a counselor can be anyone – your best friend, a relative, or a person you seek out for their objectivity because they aren’t a friend or relative. This, to me, is different than a therapist because they aren’t claiming to be able to cure you of any mental disease. A counselor, to me, is a sounding board offering different perspectives for you to consider. They are offering to be a guide in helping you achieve clarity, self-healing and self-empowerment.
Let me add to that my definition of “spiritual”. While it is true that I’m a licensed minister with the State of Ohio and a Wiccan High Priestess and Elder with 42 years experience, “spiritual” counseling shouldn’t be limited to the particular path one is treading. We are all spiritual beings having this physical experience so we share that with each other, no matter what spiritual path (or no spiritual path) we follow. “Spiritual” is that immaterial part of each of us that most of us have been sorely separated from for far too long. It’s the part that is considered “immortal” because it is energy and energy cannot be destroyed (although it may change form).
So, when I call myself a “spiritual counselor”, I’m telling you I’m a good listener with a lot of life experience who is willing to be a guide, an adviser, and an assistant to you in finding and reconnecting with that part of you that is eternal, immaterial, and sacred. No more, no less.
I would never tell someone not to see a therapist, psychologist, psychiatrist or other mental health professional. Quite the contrary, if I thought what you needed to find the solutions you seek is beyond what I can provide from a spiritual perspective, then I would recommend you see someone else who could give you what you need.
There’s something else. Not every counselor is for everyone. For that matter, neither is every therapist, psychologist, psychiatrist, etc. for everyone. There needs to be a connection, a rapport between the counselor and the seeker (I use this term because those who come to me are seeking answers.). Without that, the work to be done will be less than satisfactory or go nowhere at all. The Seeker has to feel comfortable enough to speak their personal truth so that the answers they seek have a chance of being found. So, first and foremost, in the initial meeting, both parties need to talk and see if that connection is there. Can I be of help to you? Do you feel comfortable talking with me? At the end of that first meeting, we both must have come to the conclusion that something positive could happen from our continuing on with our collaboration.
The reality of the situation is that I am a guide to you being able to reconnect with the spiritual being that resides inside you. You are the one who actually does the work and the one who allows that connection to be reestablished. I am merely here to help in that process.
It brings me great joy and pleasure to be able to help people see things from a different perspective which then causes a light to come on behind their eyes as they realize life can be very different than what they have been living…because there is much more to life than was realized until now.
We are in a time of spiritual awakening. More and more people are beginning to ask questions like, “Is this all there is?”, which leads them to explore what other possibilities might exist. Some of this is being caused by the extreme amount of stress that now exists in our culture (and probably in other cultures as well) due to the fast-paced life most of us live. Depression, high blood pressure, heart diseases, cancer and so many other illnesses are continuing to occur at an increasing frequency. Young people are burning out fast and older people are always saying, “I’m so tired.” Without our conscious connection to the spiritual being that really is us, we lose hope and find no joy in living life.
I won’t tell you that the solution for all of your life’s ills and woes is seeking out a spiritual counselor. I will tell you, you may be surprised at what you discover if you are willing to give it a try. “No man (or woman) is an island.” We are here to help each other to learn and grow in any way we are able.
I am a spiritual counselor and I hold my hand out to you. Can I be of help?
Consultations in person or by phone. First 1-hour consultation FREE. After that, each 1-hour session is $20. Contact me for details and my phone number at Durga1974@aol.com or you can find me on Facebook (Samantha Herron).