It is said that if you know the answer to the question it is not Reality Therapy. If we ask a question that is 'juicy' it promotes deep thinking. We know it promotes deep thinking when the client's focus becomes distant, they look thoughtful, contemplative and there is a small, yet visible change in energy.
Giving space for silence for some is uncomfortable. The self evaluation that occurs in the silence can also be uncomfortable for the client and we tend to rescue with suggestions or prompts to fill the space. Yet silence can be the most powerful part of the process. It gives the space for the client to think deeply. This silence comes after the juicy questions. Waiting for the thinking to occur is so important.
Clients know you are really hearing what they are saying when you use their response to frame your next question.
The use of metaphor also helps the client know that you are really hearing what they are saying. It has the power to summarise the feelings with a simple phrase that can really hit home for the client.
"So you are feeling like a doormat? That everyone is walking over you. Is that what you want?"
Using these three ways of engaging our clients in Reality Therapy can lead to better outcomes for the client. Is that what we want?