We begin with the counselor and a man and women, her clients. The counselor is able to use observation and recognize nonverbal reaction as the couple engages in conversation. The ability to read body language and absorb what is being felt simply by observing nonverbal cues. The man would cross his arms when the counselor engaged the woman, and then the man would drop his arms as the counselor and woman continued to talk. The counselor is aware of these movements as she continues the conversation. By allowing the clients to express feelings through body language, it also gives the client a chance to relax and ease into their surroundings. During conversation, the counselor would stop the clients mid discussion and adjust or tailor the conversation to reiterate or question anything that has been said. This tactic was also used for the client to have a chance to reflect on what they have personally said, and for the listener to have soak in what has been said. Using several types of questioning to assist with reflection, questioning and clarification is a form of verbal skills. She displayed feelings of empathy with a soft spoken tone and when challenging the couple with questions and such.
The counselor understood that in order to change direction of the conversation she needed to make the couple less comfortable. She knew by the change in body language of the both, comfortability had lessened. But in order to keep a level of safety, when things became tenser, she was able to reframe, and asked for clarification or used exploratory questions. This skill was used to ease tension and produced more physical movement of the couple- arm crossing, hands digging into lap. An example of an open-ended question that was used during the session:
Susan Johnson: And that, what’s that like for you to feel that way?
What it’s like for you to tell her right now that that’s how you feel in a relationship
A simple ‘yes’ or ‘no’ does not answer a question...