A first consultation with a sophrologist is an important moment where the client will explain his reason for consulting and describe his symptoms of feeling unwell or burdened’ or ‘pressured ‘
This particular consultation is also called an “anamnesis”, and involves the development of a process of trust between client and sophrologist.
The sophrologist is not allowed to give a diagnostic and therefore will not ask the same questions as a GP or a psychologist would: the sophrologist’s work consists in accompanying the client to better his wellbeing, to add extra tools on his path towards recovery without delving into past history or experiences.
If a client is new to Sophrology, he or she will receive explanations and general information on how it works, what it involves in the sessions and in daily life practice.
Typically, a client may suffer from stress and anxiety at work or because of exams coming up, or because of minor/major changes in his/her personal life or the life of his/her relatives or the work place. Sleeping problems may be a consequence, relationships and communication may be flawed which can lead to misunderstandings, or there might be a feeling of inadequacy or lack of focus on work and general tiredness.
The points that interest the sophrologist will typically follow a number of themes, such as;
how does a particular situation make you feel,
how long have you experienced that feeling,
what happens when you have these symptoms (in your body, in your mind),
how often and when in the day…
but also and importantly about the positives in your life, about what makes you tick, what you like to do in your spare time…
The sophrologist is not looking for a cause to your symptoms to eliminate this cause, but is seeking some general ideas about how you can improve the current situation by using your own resources. By creating an “alliance” with the client, the sophrologist listens rather than advocates and does not have authority over the client. Both client and sophrologist are equals in the anamnesis, and will be so in the following sessions too. The sophrologist merely listens and guides.
The initial session may last an hour or longer if needed because it is the most important session as it allows the client to try and test some of the Sophrology techniques. Following that first encounter, a programme of action may be offered by the sophrologist to the client.