The Golden Rule – The Practical Side

Treat others as you want them to treat you.  Most of us know the Golden Rule, even if we do not practice it as often as we should. This rule encourages us to treat others with the dignity and respect humanity deserves.  By doing this, we aim to inspire others to act in positive ways in the hope that everyone  involved may gain the most out of their life experiences and relationships. 

The Golden Rule can be helpful in all relationships, including therapeutic ones.  A therapeutic relationship consists of the relationship between the therapist and client(s).  Therapeutic relationships differ from everyday relationships in many ways and especially because the client is disclosing very personal information.  Nonetheless, the client (and therapist) can still benefit from employing the Golden Rule.  Below are some “Golden Rules of Therapy” the client may wish to follow:

  1. Arrive on time and early if necessary (for example, to complete paperwork).  Clients should arrive 20 minutes early to the initial session to complete intake paperwork.
  2. Silence or turn off your cell phone, and place it out of sight to reduce interruptions.
  3. If you need to cancel or reschedule an appointment, please do so no less than 24 hours in advance.  This is not only respectful to the therapist, but opens up your appointment time to someone who may need it.  Not cancelling within 24 hours of your appointment time will result in your being charged for that session.
  4. Keep your contact and insurance information up to date.
  5. Complete between session assignments.
  6. Come prepared.  Be ready to talk about setbacks and progress since your last session.  Be able to share examples of things you have learned in therapy and applied to real life.  For example, if you learned a new communication skill, be able to tell how you used it with a friend or partner.
  7. Understand that various therapy styles and techniques are used depending on the issue at hand.
  8. Ask questions or seek clarification if you do not understand something.
  9. Be open and honest in order to gain the most from your therapeutic experience.

As you follow these rules, know that your therapist should be treating you with honor and respect, as well.  She should be on time, prepared, open and honest. When both parties are mindful of how their actions affect each other the greatest therapeutic outcomes may be achieved.  Remember, therapy is a gift you give yourself and you want to enjoy this gift as much as possible. Please contact Life Enhancement Counseling Services in Orlando today at 407-443-8862 to make an appointment.


Yolanda Brailey