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Emotional Poverty

It is a particular challenge for the accompaniment of change processes, when clients have little or no access to their emotions. As emotions are a very fundamental form of internal and external orientation (see affects), people who have a very limited experiential range become very hard to understand, assess and approach, both, for themselves and for others. In addition, on their part, they can only empathise with the motives of others to a limited degree. In a working context, but not only there, they are often perceived as problematic (even if they frequently produce very good work). If, during counselling situations, they are also required to feel something, a vicious circle is easily created. One cannot feel on command! Therefore, it is very important, in interaction with such people, to offer contact which makes it attractive to relax the emotional inhibitions once more, and thus to give the revealing of emotions an inner basis. Such an offer of contact is, amongst other things, characterised by the counsellor picking up on often very subtle signals, at that time when the client unconsciously shows his emotions by body language, which the counsellor then names and expresses his own emotional reactions to (without attaching an intention to them). In this way, bit by bit, a kind of connectedness can emerge, from which the client can begin to sense the richness of his emotional impulses again, and then develop a longing to share this with others.

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