What happens in a Holistic Counselling session?

It’s very normal to feel nervous about the first session so what happens in a holistic counselling session. A counsellor will largely focus on getting to know you, developing rapport and creating a relationship with you based on mutual trust and respect.

What happens in a Holistic Counselling session?


Here are some things you can expect to discuss in your first counselling session:

  • Light and easy topics about your day so far, whether you found the location easily, a current event, etc. 
  • Any questions you may have about counselling or of your counsellor to get to know them and their approach a bit better – hobbies, interest, background, why they decided to become a counsellor, etc.
  • Why you are seeking counselling – is it your first time, what have you tried before, symptoms, current situation, intentions and goals, barriers or obstacles. 
  • Overview and actions from here that works with your intention and goals. 

By taking the time to set these foundations, it allows the therapeutic relationship to strengthen week to week. 

Now that you have time, space and support, you can work with your counsellor to determine next steps and what this may look like going forward based on your individual needs and situation. 

How do I prepare for my first counselling session?

You can prepare for your first session by thinking about your intention for the first session, what it is that you are seeking, any main issues or concerns that you would like to discuss, and what you would like out of the relationship.  

What will happen in subsequent sessions?

Each session will generally start with an intention. This can be based on previous discussions and goals, or discussed at the start of the session about what has come up for you between sessions that you would like to address. You’ll be invited to speak openly and your counsellor may ask questions along the way to clarify or invite a deeper understanding. They may take notes throughout the session or at the end. 

Each counselling session will be unique as you move together to meet the intention set. At times you will lead and the counsellor will follow, other times the counsellor will lead and you will follow.

The counsellor will use a range of tools and techniques to support you through this process. These will vary from counsellor to counsellor as it depends what training they have gone through, their strengths and personal experiences and how they intertwine these through the sessions. Read more about Amy and her style and services here.

In a general counselling session you may find yourself: 

  • sharing about your life story and relationships
  • sharing progress on something you are working on/through
  • sharing new observations, feelings and thoughts
  • exploring issues, obstacles, challenges and repeating patterns
  • working through traumatic experiences, pain and suffering
  • discussing and working through fears, behaviours, patterns, beliefs 
  • brainstorming options, solutions and making decisions and action plans
  • discussing areas of your life, your mission, priorities and values
  • improving your communication skills and role playing conversations
  • discussing, learning and practising new frameworks, strategies and tools for life
  • learning self love and self care practices
  • celebrating wins/achievements
  • and more. 

At the end of the counselling session, your counsellor will check in with you to see if the intention from the beginning has been met. You may also discuss homework, next steps, your personalised plan, appointment bookings, payments or anything else that either parties feel is required.

How long do counselling sessions go for?

Generally counselling sessions go for 60 minutes, however occasionally you may be working through something that requires a little extra time. If you are needing to be somewhere at a particular time after your session, it is a good idea to let the therapist know at the beginning of the session, so they can be mindful of this. 

What happens between counselling sessions?

At times your counsellor will invite you to complete ‘homework’ between sessions – this may look like actioning some tasks/challenges that were discussed, journaling, tracking your data (personal movements, thoughts, beliefs, etc), creating mind movies, practising breathing, tapping and meditation techniques.

How many counselling sessions will I require?

This varies from person to person and what you are seeking counselling support for. 

Some clients will work on specific issues and intentions as needed and take 1-3 sessions to do so – choosing to come back when it is right for them. Others benefit from regular ongoing support lasting weeks or months to support them during change, particular events, intense therapy, pathway to life missions and goals, and understanding the self and relationships. 

It is ultimately up to you when you feel happy with your progress, meeting your goals/intentions, support network, tools and resources. This is why we will ask for your intentions at our first session and subsequent sessions, to ensure you are receiving what you are seeking.

How often will I need to see a counsellor?

It really varies from person to person and what you are seeking counselling support for. Some clients see their counsellor sporadically – generally they know when they need a check-in and come with a very specific intention.

Others prefer to integrate the support as a regular part of their weekly, fortnightly or monthly routine, as they work towards longer term intentions and goals, understanding the self and dynamics in relationships, developing effective communication skills, designing and living your best life, establishing support networks, systems and resources.   

Your intentions are usually discussed during the first session and your counsellor will regularly check-in with you to ensure you are receiving what you are seeking. 

How do I book a counselling session with Amy?

Simply use the online booking system here or email us at info@amydoyle.com.au to book a session or ask any questions. But if you would love to learn more about holistic counselling you can read more Here.

Amy Doyle

Holistic Counsellor

Amy helps her clients move from this idea that they are broken or missing pieces of their own puzzle, to owning their story, claiming back all parts of themselves and merging together as one team to allow them to rest and be in their deepest expression.

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