7 Accidental Counsellor Tips Connect and Influence Without Burning Out

An Accidental Counsellor Can Be Any School Staff Not Trained As Counsellors But Often Find Themselves in Counselling Situations By Accident.

The problem I see in schools is the usual approach of helping people is not working well, takes a long time and the problem issue continues without improvement. The reason this is happening is because you are time poor and may rush to give advice and come up with the solution or remedy to alleviate the problem the student is presenting to you. When you rush to tell people what to do, their motivation for doing it lessens. Not only that, you are implying that the person you are helping is not capable of coping or finding an answer for themselves. Below I outline 7 tips and principles that help you connect and influence the person you are supporting without burning out.

 

7 Accidental Counsellor Tips

Connect and Influence Without Burning Out

1

 

  1. It’s all about you.

It's All About YOU!

This is all about you. What state are you in? Your mental and emotional state will influence your approach. You can get triggered easily by some of the things you hear at school. You need to focus on your own wellbeing and be aware if you are stressed or anxious. With awareness you can adjust your state. Otherwise you react unconsciously to the triggers around you and this seeps into your responses.

 

  1. It’s all about them.

It's All About Them

Listen to the person, match, mirror and pace their language, thinking and nonverbal communication. You can’t hope to influence a person if they think, “you don’t get me”. Enter their world, communicate and reflect back to them what you are hearing and seeing. You want to “get the yes” – that is when you respond to what they say, the person speaking says “YES! That’s right”! They feel not only understood but also calm and safe. With this trust established they are more open to be influenced the solution focused language and questions you have for them.

 

        3. Influence.

Influence

Avoiding pain is the number one driver of human behaviour. Followed by gaining pleasure. To influence a person you need to focus on pain. Specifically, what it’s like for them when their behaviour or circumstance occurs. This is about the person telling you rather than you telling the person. Ask, “What’s it like for you when (INSERT PROBLEM) happens?” “Is this something you are sick and tired of?” “Is it something you want to change?” Of course it goes without saying that the focus also needs to be on what THEY can do rather than what OTHER people need to do.

 

  1. Get their why.

Get their why

This is critical. Finding personal reasons for change increases motivation for the change. It’s their reason why that has them “own” the change. The usual approach of telling a student the reasons they need to make a change lowers motivation for the change. You need them to convince you.

“So why do you think this important?” “Why would you want to make this better?”

This is the biggest issue I see in “accidental counsellor conversations” in schools. The staff member outlines all the reasons the student needs to change and the student is a passive bystander not owning or being involved in the change required of them.

 

  1. Paint the picture.

Paint the picture

“Constructing a vision of a solution acts as a catalyst for bringing it about.” This “Solutions Focused” approach is an evidenced based technique that helps you influence the person to achieve what they say they want to achieve. When the person tells you they are:

 

  1. Sick and tired of the same thing (PAIN) and
  2. Tell you WHY they want it to change you help them by getting them to
  3. Paint a picture of the change.

 

Ask the person, “How would you like things to be?” Here you need to ensure that the picture is:

  • Within their control
  • Has specific and concrete behaviours (actions)
  • Is in the “presence of something rather than the absence of something”. For example rather than I won’t be stressed and anxious (won’t be is the absence) I will be more relaxed and having fun (is the presence of something) etc.

 

  1. Focus on one thing

Focus on one thing

When the person paints a picture of how they would like things to be there may be several aspects to it. It’s important that you help them focus on ONE THING.

Say something like, “Wow you have told me several things about how you would like things to be for you.” Then reflect back to them what they have told you and ask them if you have understood correctly. When they say yes, ask them, “So which one of these things you have just told me about do you want to start with”?

 

  1. Follow up

Follow up

When the person tells you where they want to start, congratulate them and ask them WHEN they may start. Then let them know that you will follow up with them to see how they went. This acts as a further support and provides some accountability for them.

How To Overcome Failure

Today, I want to talk to you about Failure.
Failure can create two different worlds. In one world, failure can be used as a fuel or drive to fuel motivation and drive people to achievement and success. In another world and for other people, failure and mistakes can paralyse them. It can create a lot of procrastination and really prevent people from stepping up and being the very best that they can be.

I recall a story from a student that I was teaching and she said to me one day,

“I would rather not try and not put in the effort and fail than really work hard and putting my very best effort and fail.”

In her mind and for a lot of people, that is a justification. It’s a protection for them. They can cope with failure because they can justify in their own mind that they didn’t really work very hard for that.

Reframe Failure

How To Overcome FailureWhat we need to do is we need to reframe failure. What does this mean? It means we have to put a different meaning on it. People who use failure as a motivation and as a fuel or drive to help them achieve their goals and success see failure as information, just that. In many ways, they even welcome it. They see failure, they make a mistake, and they just go…

“Okay, now this is going to give me some information about how I can be better, make adjustments, adapt what I’m doing…”

And so, they welcome it because it helps them to improve and become better. However, for the other group of people that we were talking about that prevents them from being their best, they see failure very differently. For them, failure is personal. It’s an identity. They create an identity out of failure. I often say to people,

“Your results do not equal who you are.”

This is what we need to do now. We need to reframe failure so that we can welcome that when it comes. When it comes to see it as information, it’s a neutral thing. It’s information; not about us but about our approach. It can help adjust our approach rather than we fail and it’s…

“I’m no good.”

“I’m worthless.”

“I’m not smart.”

And it becomes personal.

Well I hope that this tip has been useful and you can use it in your own life and to help with other people. Perhaps you might want to leave a comment about how you’ve been able to use failure as a motivation to help you achieve your goals.

Thank You!

What’s The Most Important Part Of Classroom Management?

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When I present my Classroom Management Training, I ask the teachers who attend:

What do you think is the most important aspect of Classroom Management?

The teachers provide some terrific, valid responses in which all of them are obviously critical in creating good classroom management. Things like:

  • Creating good rapport and relationships with the students
  • Being able to organize your classroom
  • Providing creative and engaging lessons
  • Being consistent

All of these are obviously critical in making sure that you have good classroom management of your class. However, if we would really be pushed to identify the most important, the most critical aspect of classroom management, I would have to say to you that would be Teacher Presence.

What's the Most Important Part of Classroom Management?

In the Conscious Classroom Management Training, the very first topic we look at just before morning tea is this idea of Teacher presence and how we develop it, what creates it. Of course the rest of the day, we then do look at classroom management strategies.

Teacher presence is who we are in the classroom, strategies is what we do in the classroom. The strategies are divided and systemized into:

  • Preventive strategies
  • Supportive strategies and,
  • Corrective strategies

The reason why Teacher presence is the most important aspect of classroom management is that all too often we may go racing in with different strategies to manage our classroom and if we don’t bring the correct presence into the room, who we are, well then the strategies obviously aren’t going to take hold and what we can do and what can be tempting is to blame the strategy, or worse, the students, the school or the parents – everyone else but the teacher. While this is a provocative and controversial concept at times, it’s very important to make sure that we understand that Teacher presence is important because it can save a lot of time.

One of the things we need to do is to look at what beliefs we have or what’s the mindset that we have. The question we need to ask ourselves if we are struggling to manage a class is:

Are the beliefs that I’m taking into that classroom working?
Am I feeling good about it?
Am I satisfied with the class?
Is it working with the students?

If the answers are No to that, well then we’ll need to analyse our own mindset and the negative beliefs and change them.

Firstly, identify the negative beliefs and then we need to challenge them and that’s how we change the beliefs.

Is that true that the student doesn’t want to learn?
Could there be other things that are driving that student’s behaviour?
What else is contributing to this?

We need to have a full analysis of what’s going on and that includes obviously looking at ourselves and the negativity or the negative mindset that we could be bringing into the class because that will affect who we are in the room and our presence. As Einstein says,

“The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result.”

If what you’re doing in a particular class is not working, it’s time to change that. It might very well be that you want to just come in to that class with a new mindset. That is a lot easier said than done and we have more information about this on our website,

https://www.humanconnections.com.au/

You may want to come to one of our trainings, and there are some testimonials below on this page that’ll give you some insights about how teachers found the Classroom Management Training.

Here is a small but powerful action step.  Identify the teachers in your school who have great presence?  You’ll know who they are because they are teachers who command respect and attention in the classroom or about walking into a classroom and the students will be giving them their attention even before the teacher asks for it. It would be very worthwhile to identify who they are and spend some time with them. You know who I’m talking about. You do have teachers like that in your school.

Don’t ask them what are the strategies you’re using, it would be good to pick their mind about how do they see teaching, how do they see the students. When they have a student who is misbehaving, how do they view that student? Pick their mindset and then model that.

I hope to see you at one of our Conscious Classroom Management Trainings this year. There’s only 4 in Sydney scheduled or perhaps you may want to email me at info@humanconnections.com.au. I’d be more than happy to help you out in any way or find out some more information on our website.

Here are testimonials from attendees at the Conscious Classroom Management Training in Sydney

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The strategies in the Conscious Classroom Management Training are good. Although I use most of these strategies, the way you employ and use them makes a difference.

Calvin Ambrose, Christian Brothers School

The video clips in the Conscious Classroom Management Training were entertaining. I find the importance of establishing clear teaching procedures useful – I’m certainly going to introduce this at the start of the new year; a very informative and practical workshop.

Eve Tsevekidis, Kingsgrove High School

I found the Conscious Classroom Management Training useful because it reinforces or renews information previously known.

Maria Duffy, Kingsgrove High School

Make the course in the Conscious Classroom Management Training a little bit longer so it is not so rushed. The psychology info at the beginning was good to.

Renée Beyer, Kirrawee High School

The Conscious Classroom Management Training will help me connect with students.

Shahrokh Ghahfarrokhi, Morisset High School

I like the emphasis on explicitly teaching rules, expectations and behaviour explicitly, just like any other aspects of the curriculum. The Conscious Classroom Management Workshop reignited my passion for teaching and belief that all students are worth teaching and want to learn! Thank you!

Radhika Dixon, Greenacre Public School

As a teacher in a behaviour or emotional disorder school, it was great to see that the strategies we have in place are what you recommend! I’m not sure I could use all the teaching or learning strategies in the Conscious Classroom Management Training but I will try to modify them and give some a go. I did find the presentation very engaging – you have great presence! It did seem high school focussed at times but I suppose it’s hard to give examples outside your own experience, although it would have been beneficial (for me) to have some stuff framed in a “primary setting” way. However, to be fair, my classroom of K-4 emotionally disturbed students probably doesn’t fit a high school or primary school environment!
I actually found that the extra slides that you showed at the beginning were incredibly beneficial and should be part of this presentation all the time. I visit mainstream teachers every week and they all want to know when and how I am going to “change” the student that is in my class before they return to mainstream of fix them. Realising that the students choose their behaviour and that you can’t make them change is a powerful piece of information or insight for all teachers. It frames beautifully everything else you present. Sorry about the essay!

Linda O’callaghan, Cook School

The Conscious Classroom Management Training reaffirmed a lot of what I was already doing (good stuff) and made me realise some of my negative approaches to management. This would be an excellent P.D. for teachers just starting their teaching profession (along with everyone else) as when people leave one and start teaching, they either have been told conflicting help on management or have no guidance whatsoever. This info is great and will support one into the rest of any career.

Helen Scevity, Menai High School

I highly recommend the Conscious Classroom Management Training for greater understanding and results.

Mark Ranftl, Wollemi College

The Conscious Classroom Management Training was very useful. There was intensive presentation and discussion about classroom management.

Welmince Djulete, Flinders University

The Conscious Classroom Management Training was interesting, informative and useful. The information is very practical and comprehensive.

Lilis Su’adah, Flinders University

The Conscious Classroom Management Training is useful because you used real cases.

Emma Fredman, Kensington Public School

I found the Conscious Classroom Management Training because of the practical examples.

Sara Vaccaro, Killarney Heights High School

The Conscious Classroom Management Training is very useful and practical. Thank you!

Marian Botros, Kirrawee High School

The Conscious Classroom Management Training delivered good ideas.

Jennifer Walters, St Peters Catholic College

The Conscious Classroom Management Training has good ideas. Its emphasis is on perception.

Michelle Schlyder, Trinity Grammar School

The Conscious Classroom Management Training has really inspiring techniques for helping me to make a change.

Lisa Blanche, Menai High School

The Big Ideas in the Conscious Classroom Management Training were very helpful to put things in place to create positive environment in the classroom. Thanks!

Anonymous

The Conscious Classroom Management Training’s content was relevant and confirmed some of my own beliefs.

Kieran Lowrie, St Peters Catholic College

I found you and your info very easy to understand and practical. There were moments in the Conscious Classroom Management Training when I could picture myself using the conversations and mindsets with specific students.

Jacqueline Hunt, Campbelltown Performing Arts High School

I’m very interested in attending the other course you run based on the information from the Conscious Classroom Management Training you gave us today. I felt the strategies appear practical to implement and I can see how I would implement them on who they would work.

Adrianna Allen, Campbelltown Performing Arts High School

The Conscious Classroom Management Training was an engaging and informative session that provided tools to help teachers connect with and support students. It gave me great ideas and also reinforced strategies I found I already use.

Elyssa May, Menai High School

The Conscious Classroom Management Training is absolutely mind-blowing. They need to teach this in uni or have it as part of an induction training. Rocky, thanks for this down-to-earth training. I recommend all teachers to this course.

Tania Mclaren, Swansea High School

I really liked your value system. That was the key. The same strategies with a different value system would not work.If you were interested in coming out to a school to run workshops with a group of beginning teachers (about 15 or so), I would be interested in talking with you about that.

John Wright, Castle Hill High School

Attendees from the following schools joined the Conscious Classroom Management Training in Sydney

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  • Kingsgrove High School
  • Mackellar Girls High School
  • Stellar Music School
  • Menai High School
  • Killarney Heights High School
  • Matraville Soldiers’ Settlement Public School
  • Abbotsleigh
  • St Peters Catholic College
  • Wollemi College
  • Cook School
  • Kirrawee High School
  • Campbelltown Performing Arts High School
  • Christian Brothers High School
  • Greenacre Public School
  • St Paul’s Catholic College
  • Trinity Grammar School
  • Kensington Public School
  • Covenant Christian School
  • Cherrybrook Technology High School
  • Castle Hill High School
  • Swansea High School
  • Kotara High
  • Flinders University
  • Morisset High School

Sign Up to The Online Conscious Classroom Management Training

Online Classroom Management Training

$197

Per Person Access to 17 Modules

Whole Staff Online Access

$990

Subscribe My School (Up to 100 Staff)

Conscious Classroom Management Training Parramatta

Here are testimonials from attendees at the Conscious Classroom Management Training in Parramatta 2012

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This Conscious Classroom Management Training was useful in giving me more strategies to us.

Jennifer Abiwahab, Colyton High School Trade School

The Conscious Classroom Management Training was a great day. The handouts were very good – I can adapt them for primary class. A very helpful workshop.

Angie Burrell, St Paul’s Grammar School

The Conscious Classroom Management Training was a valuable learning experience for me. I have gained ideas and strategies that I will implement in my classes which I believe are effective. Rocky is a great speaker with an abundance of knowledge and experience.
Thanks for your tips! The examples in the booklet appear
useful in terms of targeting specific behaviours. I look forward to reading them in my own time.

Rebecca Zeait, St Joseph’s Primary School

This Conscious Classroom Management training reinforced the strategies I already use in the classroom. I found the handouts most helpful.

Karissa Baines, Walters Road Public School

The Conscious Classroom Management Training provided a great insight into how to help students. The training was easy to understand and definitely applicable.

Lauren Miceli, Mitchell High School

The strategies presented at the Conscious Classroom Management Training were useful, practical and well explained.

Daniel Gardner, Colyton High School Trade School

There were several strategies at the Conscious Classroom Management Training workshop that I was able to walk away with including the small strategies that you could use in different classes.

Catherine Griffin, Birrong Boys High School

Other Comments

The Conscious Classroom Management Training workshop was extremely useful and practical, providing activities I can use in my classroom and reinforcing things I already have in place.

Classroom Management Training Parramatta

The Conscious Classroom Management Training workshop outlined the setting of clear boundaries

from the beginning and getting students to participate in the process.

Practical advice was provided at the Conscious Classroom Management Training workshop – some of it I already use.

The Conscious Classroom Management Training workshop affirmed effective strategies used in the past and refreshed positive rephrasing techniques for use with difficult ‘D’ students.

Attendees from the following schools joined the Conscious Classroom Management Training in Parramatta

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  • St Paul’s Grammar School
  • New River Leadership
  • St Joseph’s Primary
  • Birrong Boys High School
  • John Palmer Public School
  • Mitchell High School
  • Walters Road Public School
  • Flinders University
  • Colyton High School Trade School

Conscious Classroom Management Sydney 2012

Here are testimonials from attendees at the Conscious Classroom Management Training in Sydney 2012

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Thank you. The Conscious Classroom Management Training course was interesting and engaging. I feel that it has certainly been beneficial and will be the start of much reflection and change in the running of my classroom and reaction to students’ behaviour.

Vanessa Conrow, Narara Valley High School

Thank you for developing my knowledge about classroom presence and effective classroom management at the Conscious Classroom Management Training.

Susan Stavrou, Our Lady of Lebanon College

It was useful to reflect on the classroom strategies on what is useful and practical at this Conscious Classroom Management Training workshop.

Josip Fairvale High School

It was good to see new techniques to use at the Conscious Classroom Management Training and to know am on right track.

Jeanette Sellars, Narara Valley High School

Many helpful strategies were outlined at the Conscious Classroom Management Training.

Amelie McLean, Blaxland High School

The Conscious Classroom Management Training gave a practical way of implementing the ‘theory’ of classroom management.

Paul Wakelin, Narara Valley High School

The Conscious Classroom Management was very useful. I’m a beginning teacher. I will implement some of these things that I feel I can use in my classroom.

Rebecca Pratt, Beverly Hills Girls High School

The information at the Conscious Classroom Management Training was very useful as gives food for thought, forces us to reflect on our own practises.

Kai-Jung Chen, Catherin McAuley College

The Conscious Classroom Management Training was very well organised and presented. Some stuff seems sooo obvious but it was great.

Kate Wiktorowicz, Kingsgrove High School

The Conscious Classroom Management Training provided practical strategies to implement in classrooms.

Steven Hunt, Narara Valley High School

Attendees from the following schools joined the Conscious Classroom Management Training in Sydney

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  • Narara Valley High School
  • Fairvale High School
  • Our Lady of Lebanon College
  • Blaxland High School
  • Beverly Hills Girls High School
  • Catherin McAuley College
  • Kingsgrove High School

Conscious Classroom Management Training Liverpool 2012

Here are testimonials from attendees at the Conscious Classroom Management Training in Liverpool 2012

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I would recommend the Conscious Classroom Management Training to colleagues for the practical approach to classroom management.

Andrews Van Nguyen, Macquarie Fields High School

The Conscious Classroom Management Training was a great professional development, not drowned in theory, but instead providing practical strategies to help in various scenarios.

Peter van der Kley, Macquarie Fields High School

The Conscious Classroom Management Training provided great real life situations that can be applied. A great refresher course for classroom management.

Dena Dahdal, Mitchell High School

This Conscious Classroom Management Training has been absolutely fantastic and truly insightful. I have learnt lots about myself and how my class react on my feeling and attitudes. Thank you and I will be recommending that all teachers at my school at least come to one of your workshops. Thanks again.

Krystal Waite, Caringbah North Public School

The Conscious Classroom Management Training provided a range of strategies, a way of explaining students’ behaviour, a reminder to re-think how we go into a room.

Tracy Law, Hawkesbury High School

It was great at the Conscious Classroom Management Training to be reminded of behavioural management techniques, and to learn some new ones.

Daniel Shaw, Concord High School

The Conscious Classroom Management Training was very practical and gave good examples and fresh ideas for classroom management.

Ashleigh Scocco, Camden Public School

The Conscious Classroom Management Training reinforced many techniques that I am already using and provided new information.

Amanda Smith, Camden Public School

The Conscious Classroom Management Training was a very valuable session with strategies I can use every day in my classroom.

Kate Wilton, Gilroy Catholic College

The Conscious Classroom Management Training was extremely useful and engaging.

Alan Georges, Fairvale High School

The Conscious Classroom Management Training was a great day full of simple and applicable strategies.

Matthew Humphry, Prairiewood High School

Thank you very much for the time you took during the Conscious Classroom Management Training discussing specific needs of students in my class. I had tried everything and felt hopeless/unsure of how to make it to the end of the year. I feel more confident, realise I have been doing the right things and better prepared to go back to the classroom with new strategies.

Sarah Davis, Caringbah North Public School

The tips presented at the Conscious Classroom Management Training were great. Information was relevant to both Primary and High school.
Andrea Bowen, Koonawarra Public School

I liked the practical ideas presented at the Conscious Classroom Management Training, and scenarios discussed. Will surely help me and other teachers in my school. Thanks so much, Rocky. An excellent workshop!
Ni Ketut Ayu Puspita Dewi, The University of Sydney

Attendees from the following schools joined the Conscious Classroom Management Training in Liverpool

[tboc_button title=”CLICK HERE TO FIND OUT MORE ABOUT THE CONSCIOUS CLASSROOM MANAGEMENT TRAINING AND REGISTER ONLINE” href=”/conscious-classroom-management-training/”]
  • Macquarie Fields High School
  • Mitchell High School
  • Caringbah North Public School
  • Camden Public School
  • Gilroy Catholic College
  • Fairvale High School
  • Prairiewood High School
  • Hawkesbury High School
  • Concord High School
  • Koonawarra Public School
  • The University of Sydney

Teacher Professional Development

As any teacher knows, trying to control an entire classroom of young people can be extremely challenging, particularly if there are students who just do not want to cooperate. It can be difficult to know what to do to gain control and respect of the class so that each student gets the most out of their education. A well-managed class is a productive class, where students are engaged and performing at their full potential. Professional development for teachers is vital for learning classroom management strategies, interpersonal skills, and how to deal with behaviour issues.

When it comes to classroom management, prevention is the key to creating a good learning environment. This involves setting ground rules and expectations from the beginning so that students know what the boundaries are. Prevention also involves creating a good connection with the students so that they respect and trust the teacher. Once a good rapport has been established, students will be less likely to act out.

Professional development for teachers can also impart behaviour management strategies that teachers can use to keep the students on track. These could include verbal and non-verbal reinforcement, humour, positive and negative feedback, and rearranging students and work stations for better productivity. Teachers must have a range of methods for ensuring that communication lines stay open and consistency is maintained.

Finally, teacher professional development courses can give educators insight into how to correct a behavioural problem in the classroom. Effective strategies include removing the student from the classroom, diffusing the situation before it gets out of hand, and involving the parents. Experienced teachers know that not every strategy will work with every child, so professional development sessions can give teachers a range of backup options to choose from.

Regardless how long one has been teaching, a teacher professional development course can give a great deal of insight into classroom management techniques, and how to effectively facilitate better behaviour in the classroom. Teachers can learn new methods of how to assert authority, foster communication and respect, and create an environment where students can learn at their full potential. When order is maintained in the classroom, both students and teachers can benefit.

References:   https://humanconnections.com.au/conscious-classroom-management-training/  

Connect and Influence without Burning Out
Accidental Counsellor Training
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