My goal in this twice-monthly series of free webinars is to teach one primary counseling concept or skill each month and then provide a case study that allows participants to become more proficient at utilizing that skill or concept.

The topics for 2021 are:

    • January: Counseling Guilt, Shame, and Regret as Different Experiences
    • February: Growing Negative Emotion Tolerance
    • March: What Is Emotional Maturity?
    • April: Counseling a Couple After an Affair
    • May: Developing a Safety Plan for Domestic Violence
    • June: How to Listen Like a Counselor
    • July: Effective Goal Setting in Counseling
    • August: The Counselor’s Personality and the Effectiveness of Counseling
    • September: Forgiveness and Sticky Memories
    • October: Thinking Well about “Boundaries”
    • November: Identifying Manipulative Repentance
    • December: Thinking Well about Mental Health

Each webinar is free, starts at 1pm EST, and lasts for approximately 50 minutes. Each webinar will be a self-contained unit. You won’t feel lost if are only able to attend a few.

These are great events for:

    • Pastors, chaplains, and ministry leaders looking to enhance their pastoral care skills
    • Counselors wanting CEU credits to help them learn more about the intersection of their faith and practice
    • Leaders in church-based counseling ministries looking to grow in their case wisdom
    • Undergraduate students looking to discern a calling to vocational ministry or a career as a professional counselor
    • Friends and small group leaders committed to walking faithfully alongside their peers in tough times

Here is the (a) date, (b) RSVP, and (c) topic summary for each webinar.

January 2021

January 14th –  Counseling Guilt, Shame, and Regret as Different Experiences

Too often we use the terms guilt, shame, and regret like the colors purple, violet, and lavender. We treat them as if they were basically the same. That is inaccurate and unhelpful. It results in us applying the gospel in ways that can actually be hurtful. In this webinar, we will consider key differences in these experiences and how our application of Christian themes should vary with each.

January 28th –  A Case Study in Counseling Guilt, Shame, and Regret

In this webinar, we will consider a case study where differentiating guilt, shame, and regret is pivotal to being a helpful counselor.

February 2021

February 11 – Growing Negative Emotion Tolerance

Too often we think the only intervention for unpleasant emotions is to eliminate them. It is wonderful when that is possible. But sometimes difficult circumstances persist, and corresponding unpleasant emotions linger. The ability to be resilient and the capacity to tolerate unpleasant emotions is an important life skill. The inability to do so is at the root of many destructive life patterns. In this webinar, we will consider how to build a healthy and God-honoring negative emotion tolerance.

February 25th –  A Case Study in Developing Negative Emotion Tolerance

In this webinar, we will examine a case study where helping the counselee develop greater negative emotion tolerance was important for helping them reach their goals.

March 2021

March 11th –  What Is Emotional Maturity?

Maturity, of any kind, tends to be like art – we know it when we see it, but have a hard time defining what it is. Emotional maturity may be the most difficult kind of maturity to define. But if we are going to respond to adverse circumstances well, we need to have a better definition for emotional maturity than “stoic” or “happy.” In this webinar, we will consider key marks of emotional maturity in difficult times.

 March 25th – A Case Study in Developing Emotional Maturity

In this webinar, we will consider a case study where cultivating emotional maturity was a central element in the counseling process.

April 2021

April 15th – Counseling a Couple After an Affair

The discovery of an affair brings many dynamics into the counseling office: intense emotion, shame, resistance, broken trust, affair partners that don’t want the relationship to end, explaining household disruption to children, navigating friends asking “What’s wrong?,” and the list could go on. In this webinar, we will consider basic triage level care for the early sessions after an affair when the full story has yet to come to light.

April 29th – A Case Study in Counseling a Couple After an Affair

In this webinar, we will consider a case study where one spouse just learned their partner had been unfaithful.

May 2021

May 6th –  Developing a Safety Plan for Domestic Violence

Safety is always the first level of concern in counseling. No one doubts this (or, at least, they shouldn’t), but unless we know how to develop a safety plan, counseling can easily begin to focus on less important things simply because we know more about them. Knowing how to develop plan is as important as knowing how to walk with someone who is scared and unsettled as the plan is made. In this webinar, we will consider both the key elements of a safety plan and how to come alongside someone who needs one.

May 20th – A Case Study for Developing a Safety Plan

In this webinar, we will consider a case study where it becomes apparent that a safety plan is needed.

June 2021

June 10th – How to Listen Like a Counselor

We can easily assume that because we listen every day, listening is a skill we’re good at. But just because we prepare meals everyday doesn’t mean we’re good cooks. Listening is a vital skill for all relationships, and especially counseling relationships. In this webinar, we will consider several skills and approaches to become a more effective listener.

June 24th – A Case Study to Learn to Listen Like a Counselor

In this webinar, we will consider a case study where effective listening skills are essential to building the rapport for the counseling relationship to catch traction.

July 2021

July 15th – Effective Goal Setting in Counseling

Counseling can easily start with a simple “eliminate the presenting problem” goal. This is not bad, and sometimes is effective. But this kind of goal setting can often make it difficult to discern when things are “better” and how much better things need to be for counseling to conclude. In this webinar, we will consider how to craft counseling goals in order to best facilitate the progress an individual wants to make.

July 29th – A Case Study to Learn Effective Goal Setting in Counseling

In this webinar, we will consider a case study where the creation of good counseling goals is the pivotal point that unlocks the progress made in the rest of counseling.

August 2021

August 12th – The Counselor’s Personality and the Effectiveness of Counseling

Counselors are people too. Counselors have strengths, weaknesses, quirks, and personality traits. These things impact the effectiveness of counseling. If understood and managed well, they can be an asset to the effectiveness of counseling. When we are uninformed or naïve about their impact, they can be a detriment. In this webinar, we will consider the various ways the counselor’s personality can impact the effectiveness of counseling.

August 26th – A Case Study on the Impact of the Counselor’s Personality

In this webinar, we will consider a case study where navigating personality differences between the counselor and counselee is an important part of effective counseling.

September 2021

September 16th – Forgiveness and Sticky Memories

“Forgive and forget” is a blissful idea. But often the events we need to forgive are pivotal events in our life story. How do you forget abuse, adultery, or betrayal? How do you answer basic questions about your life or understand your emotional responses without some recollection of these events? In this webinar, we will consider how to honor God and fulfill the command to forgive when the memories of the offenses against us remain sticky.

September 30th – A Case Study on Forgiveness and Sticky Memories

In this webinar, we will consider a case study where helping someone respond to sticky memories of a past offense is central to their counseling goal.

October 2021

October 14th – Thinking Well about “Boundaries”

Christians can get very conflicted on the concept of boundaries. Some say, “Jesus crossed all boundaries to save us. How could we do anything less?” Others say, “Jesus does not ask us to be a doormat, suffer needlessly, and enable oppressive people.” Chances are, you want to say, “Right, I agree,” to both groups. In this webinar, we will consider how to think well about the multiple relational dynamics captured in the term “boundaries.”

October 28th – A Case Study on Thinking Well about “Boundaries”

In this webinar, we will consider a case study where helping an individual think clearly about what does and does not honor God in the concept of boundaries is essential to their counseling progress.

November 2021

November 4th – Identifying Manipulative Repentance

Not everyone who cries is sorry. Saying, “I know I’m not perfect,” is not the same thing as saying, “I know I was wrong.” Often destructive relationships are perpetuated because the offended person feels obligated to accept manipulative repentance as if it were genuine repentance. In this webinar, we will consider several markers that can help identify when someone is using repentance as a tool to maintain power in a relationship rather than a way to own their fault and seek forgiveness.

November 18th – A Case Study in Identifying Manipulative Repentance

In this webinar, we will consider a case study where helping a counselee discern how to respond when the repentance of someone close to them gives indications of being manipulative.

December 2021

December 2nd – Thinking Well about Mental Health

Too often conversations regarding mental health get caught between the extremes of “mental illness is a myth” and “everything that disrupts life is mental illness.” Neither of these all-or-nothing approaches help us help others well. In this webinar, we will consider how to think well about mental health and how to help counselees who are trying to discern if their life disruption should be attributed to their beliefs and choices or a mental health struggle.

December 16th – A Case Study in Thinking Well about Mental Health

In this webinar, we will consider a case study where helping a counselee discern what role a mental health struggle contributes to their overall counseling goals.