◦ Remain calm. It can be challenging to stay away from sharing your own anxiety, irritation, or emotional reaction.
◦ Reflect what you hear, “What I hear you to be saying is __________.”
◦ Show empathy, “That must be really tough for you.” or “It sounds like you’re feeling really overwhelmed.”
◦ Assist the student in developing an action plan that addresses the most pressing concern.
Examples of direct questions:
“I’ve been noticing ________, how are you feeling?”
“Have you ever had a period in your life before now when you’ve felt this way?
“What do you know about depression/anxiety?”
“Do you have an eating disorder?”
“Has anyone in your family gone through this before?”
Assisting A Student Who Might Be Reluctant To Seek Counseling
Unless a student is at risk for harm to self or others, counseling remains a voluntary option for students. Despite every effort on your part to facilitate a referral, the student may choose not to follow through on your suggestion that they seek counseling. If you find yourself in this situation, continue to express your belief that the student could benefit from counseling, and keep your offer of help available to the student. Reassure the student that the CAPS services are confidential, free of charge, and that counseling can be an empowering tool of change. Encourage the student to “try it and see how it goes”. Acknowledge, validate, and discuss the student’s fears and concerns about seeking help.