Essential Skills You’ll Need As A Counsellor

The job of a counsellor requires a unique, compassionate approach. People who work as counsellors need to be thick-skinned and patient, and most importantly, they need to have a passion for working with people.

The world can be a scary place; counsellors are among the professionals in the world who are doing their part to make it a better place. If you’re considering becoming a counselor, there are a few essential skills that’ll help you as you make a difference in the world. This article will discuss the essential skills you need as a counsellor.

What Do Counsellors Do?

The simple answer is they counsel individuals, couples, or groups of people who’ve gone through traumatic life events or their personal problems. Life can be complicated, and at times, we just need a person who can help us make sense of it all, listen, and offer solutions to our problems or help us solve them ourselves. This is, in essence, what a counsellor does. They’ll sit with you, listen and offer guidance in a very similar way to a therapist.

Do You Need to Study to Become a Counselor?

Yes, a formal qualification is usually needed for an individual to become a counsellor in Australia. The degree to which you act as a counsellor would probably depend on your level of qualification and what type of counselling you studied. There are a few courses you can take in counselling, including:

  • Diploma in Counselling
  • Bachelor’s degree in counselling
  • A graduate certificate in counselling

Essential Skills You’ll Need as a Counsellor

As a counsellor, you’ll work with people from all walks of life. From students struggling with the load of studies to adults who’ve been through terrible, harmful situations. Because of the diverse nature of this career, you need to have a diverse set of skills as well, such as:

Good Communication Skills

Communicating clearly is an extremely helpful skill for a counsellor. You don’t want clients to misunderstand what you’re saying, right? As a counsellor, you want to be able to effectively communicate the way forward for clients in a way that makes them feel at ease and comfortable.

A Good Understanding of Ethics

Counsellors can often be put in challenging situations that could influence them to compromise their ethics. For this reason, you must have rock-hard ethics that are immovable no matter the circumstances. This will ensure that your integrity as a counsellor stays intact and build trust with your clients.


Remember this: As a counsellor, you’re working with people who are all at different levels of maturity, both emotionally and physically.


Because of this, you’ll need a lot of patience to get the desired result from your counselling sessions. There might be times when you have to deal with the same issue over and over again. This can be frustrating, but it’s part of the process and having patience will help you deal with it.


One of the most important skills that any counsellor should have, and also be a driving reason as to why you choose counselling as a career, is compassion. As a counsellor, first and foremost, you should have a strong desire to want to help others.

Emotional Stability

You’re going to be meeting with a lot of people from different stages of life,q all with their own problems. Listening and guiding people through their issues every day can take its toll on your mental well-being, so it’s important that you’re someone who has a strong sense of self and can cope well with stress.


In order to help people get through some challenges, you need to be able to hear them out, understand their backgrounds and not bring any preconceived ideas about clients.


The role of a counsellor requires you to be open-minded and tolerant of people. Being open-minded also pertains to being open to new research and practices.


Counsellors need to have a level of trustworthiness that allows their patients to trust them easily. This’ll caltivate a healthy relationship with clients, enabling you to counsel them effectively in the long run.

Research Skills

When it comes to counselling, there’s no copy-pasting solution to helping people. Because people are unique, your counselling approach needs to be unique as well. This doesn’t mean you can’t use the same methods and research when dealing with clients; they just have to be used appropriately for that client.

Problem-solving Skills

Having good problem-solving skills is always beneficial, regardless of the career in. But, having these skills is particularly helpful as a counsellor. This is because you’ll often need to deal with situations that require complex and unique approaches, whether it be navigating counselling in a difficult divorce or assisting children with abuse parents, being able effectively solve problems is invaluable.

Observational Skills

As a counsellor, you can learn a lot from people through their body language. That’s why honing in on your observational skills is important. By observing your patients, you can tell what they might be feeling and adjust your counselling method to suit them better.

Final Thoughts

As we close off, we need to mention that careers like counselling might be difficult because of some of the situations you’re exposed to, but they’re also extremely rewarding. Think about when one of your clients has an amazing breakthrough or they have come so far that they no longer need counselling. Use these skills, and you’ll be a great counsellor; there’s no doubt about it!