I sat my exam at the end of my introductory counselling course yesterday. For regular readers/followers you’ll know that I’ve been considering for a long time what I’m really doing. Like so many I woke up in my middle age in a job that I could do but frankly had long lost the passion for. At first I blamed this on being with the same firm for nearly 20 years, who whilst offering me a ridiculously high salary and benefits package including a redundancy package that made it virtually certifiable to quit on your own volition and lots of opportunities over the years a long term slow decline at the UK site I worked at wasn’t conducive to good vibes. When I left – 4 years ago this week – I wanted to try something new but as ever the pull of salary offers and thinking “Maybe somewhere will be different” led to me spending 3 years in other jobs but coming to the same conclusion. “I’d rather be doing something else.” So I decided last year to go part time at work – well they offered that when I said I’d be leaving – and embarked on a counselling skills course.
This has culminated with the externally assessed examination which I took yesterday. a years worth of work condensed into 90mins of exam. Of course afterwards part of you resent having revised all the definitions that they didn’t ask you about but I felt somewhat happier with my answers overall than I did in the mock exam we had a month back which I actually passed well above the 60% needed to be deemed proficient and awarded the qualification. I can therefore only now wait until mid August for the results but with a reasonable degree of confidence.
I’ve signed up already for the obvious next step the next level course again one year where you build on the skills already learnt but some more theory is introduced around the main schools of counselling theory which I’m keen to learn about and have already found myself reading bits in the text books I have obtained this year to gain an insight.
But this is an ending – that came home to me when we last met as a group with the tutor for our last revision class last week. We meet again next week but that is some quick formalities on handing in our portfolios for assessment and then we’re off for a meal to celebrate. A few are planning to go onto the next stage like me so the core of the group will continue but some won’t be for various reasons, including the one I’ve worked most closely with. Funny for me the end date was until recently just that – the end date. Now it has some emotion attached to it. They’ve been a really great group, hugely supportive and encouraging of everyone and always willing to provide great feedback on your performance etc. We’ve had no internal competitions and any bickering at all – it’s been a real real pleasure.
Anyway… all good things do come to an end. Hopefully I’ll be writing something similar next year when I reach the end of that course too.