Foresight’s approach is motivated by a passion for providing clients with truth and an outright disgust of deceptions, misinformation, and ignorance. When any of those are detected, they can be corrected by using several techniques. To that end, sessions are dedicated to spotlighting underlying beliefs, assumptions, and expectations in order to determine which ones are untrustworthy. What makes this less than an easy task is that we assume we already know what we need to know, so why waste time examining those? The ultimate goal is to embrace wisdom and reject all counterfeits. It is only after we embrace wisdom that we appreciate its intrinsic beauty, its faithfulness, its proven record of desirable outcomes, and the absence of painful payments with which misinformation and deceptions surprise us, seemingly coming out of nowhere.
Because we think we already know what we need to know, we try correcting our painful situations on our own which often results in frustration. At that point, we might choose a very costly option because it seems like the only logical choice left to us. We can choose blaming, anger, rage, violence, shutting down, or abandoning someone, or a job, or a relationship. Suppose you were taught that when a car has a mechanical breakdown, it’s all over. Is it wise to abandon your car when it has a broken fan belt? You would if you believed what you were taught.
The question almost always asked by graduate students is: Which therapeutic technique is best? It seems like a reasonable question to ask, but not one that answers the question we ought to be asking. When you take your automobile to a mechanic, are you more concerned about which brand of tools will be used, or what will be the final condition of your car when the work is completed?
Along with seeking the “best” therapy technique, we ought to be asking the question, what is it we intend to accomplish? The answer usually given is “good mental health,” and that leads to the really big question, what is good mental health? What standard will be used to determine good mental health and healthy relationships? You would think we would have that one figured out by now, but in 2008 a major mental health organization held a contest among its members to see who could define mental health. If the counselor’s view is flawed, then you might end up swapping your current problems for new ones.”
When Foresight was founded, which standard to use for healthy relationships was determined prior to choosing a therapeutic technique. The standard chosen is found in the Bible and, by that standard, most of us need help. Two major benefits of using that standard are: (1) it is absolute, meaning it is applicable to every generation, gender, era, and culture and; (2) we have centuries of history showing the benefits and dependability of using that standard. Foresight then chose three counseling techniques to facilitate mental and relationship health: Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT), design focused, and wisdom based therapies.
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy focuses on how and what we think and the resulting behaviors we have practiced since childhood. If a therapist can help a client identify a particular belief they have about life, others, or themselves that is problematic, then that belief can be changed to promote healthy outcomes. The beliefs we are talking about are somewhat subconscious ones such as “I am certain to fail,” and “People must think well of me,” and “if someone loves me, they will do what I want.” Without realizing it, we all have adopted numerous misconceptions and outright deceptions about love, performance, relationships, and reality in general.
Design Focused Therapy is based on the fact that we are creatures of design, not chance or evolution, and therefore sound therapy would direct the client to benefit from that design. The concept of design is not knew to us. We know everything manufactured was first designed by someone. We also know that when you use something outside of its design, you run the risk of doing damage. Who would use a fine cutlery knife as a screwdriver? Who would attempt to pull an 18,000 pound commercial trailer with a Honda Civic? How many times have you heard someone complain that: “Nobody told me!”
So just how are we designed to function and relate to others? How is the marriage relationship designed to work? Without having this knowledge, we are left to our own imaginations, experimenting with the lives of others and our own. When we do things our way and run into trouble, we blame others rather than ask if maybe we were trying to accomplish something outside of our design. There is great comfort during therapy if you know up front that the pattern to which you are conforming is one that has thousands of years of proven success. Sadly, this is information that few of us learned in our youth.
Wisdom Based Therapy is a form of counseling which uses historically proven insights to help the client make decisions that will produce healthy outcomes in business, marriage, finances, and life in general. Some might think of wisdom as “common sense,” but today’s “common sense” is neither all that common nor all that sensible.
Because relationships act like mirrors, they reveal issues within ourselves of which we are unaware. The more significant a relationship is to us the more likely we are to have irritation in it. A professional counselor can help identify and correct the behaviors, conscious and unconscious beliefs, attitudes, and expectations which act as road blocks to peace and enjoyable relationships. Once revealed, an instructional (teaching) style of counseling is used to show the client how to correct these.
Foresight’s counseling follows this three-step approach:*
Counseling involves examining and challenging the very foundation of the untrustworthy beliefs you have unknowingly adopted and with which you currently feel comfortable. This process can be downright scary at times so clients should not expect to feel better during or after each session. As you undergo change, some others might not welcome your growth and react toward you in disappointing and even hurtful ways. Counseling offers no guarantee that everything will be as you had hoped it would.
* Only for those requesting an openly Christian orientation will counseling emphasize Biblical mandates, insights, principles, covenants, laws, and promises of God.