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Briefly outline and describe the essential elements of a solution-based, short-term pastoral counseling strategy such as its goal-orientation; brief (i.e., number of sessions) and time-limited (i.e., length of each session) nature; basic tenets and guiding assumptions (briefly explain each tenet and assumption), essential interpersonal skills, and possible behavioral positions (i.e., attending, blaming, willing).

The goal-orientation for the short-term pastoral counseling should be to get the counselee to focus on their own goals that they have for themselves, and not so much what others or the counselor has for them. The class presentation, Overview of a Solution-Based, Short-Term Strategy, presents that you should limit the counseling
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“The solution-focused counselor wants to describe the goal as something the counselee can get on track with upon leaving the initial interview.” (Kollar, 2011, p. 131) The chief aim is to get a picture of who the counselee wants to be once the issue they are dealing with has been dealt with. It should be a picture that glorifies God and has substance. The counselor’s role during this phase is that of a collaborator with the counselee, as they work together in gaining a better understanding of what the counselee has as their goals. A guiding assumption through this phase is the God is already starting to heal the counselee and is already working a higher purpose through them.

Phase 3 – Developing the Action Plan

The main purpose in this phase is to assist the counselee in creating an plan of action to start enacting in their life. The goal of the phase should be to put together a realistic plan that they can the counselee can start carrying out immediately. “Wisdom does not necessarily consist of knowing what to do in an ultimate sense, but in knowing what to do next.” (Kollar, 2011, p. 127) It should not be a plan for the distant future. It’s one that should promote strong emotional/ mental health, allow for a closer walk with Christ, and assist in the building up of relationships around the counselee. The plan should also be one that the counselee will be able to keep rolling with well after the counseling sessions have ended.

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