Although online counselling may initially feel quite different than face to face counselling, there are many benefits to it. The following tips will support you in increasing the comfort and quality of your online counselling experience:
To the best of your ability ensure that you have a space that is distraction free and that will allow you to speak freely and confidentially. Talking with your family beforehand and/or having a “do not disturb” sign may help.
Find a well-lit space, ideally not in front of a window so that your counsellor is able to see you clearly. It helps to have lighting behind your computer/phone screen to illuminate your face.
Closing down browser tabs and other applications on your computer such as email and streaming services (Netflix for example) will help increase the speed of your internet.
Using headphones can be helpful to eliminate background noise.
Familiarize Yourself with the Technology
Understanding the technology and testing the audio and video of your computer on the platform before the session is recommended. Zoom allows you to test these prior to joining a meeting.
Discuss with your counsellor your concerns and comfort level with technology. Your counsellor will work with you to address your concerns and to come up with a “plan B” for counselling should there be issues with the technology.
Find a comfortable place to sit where you can position your camera in a way that allows your counsellor to see you.
Express Concerns – Ask Questions
The MFRC has taken every precaution to ensure your confidentiality and that the counselling platform being utilized meets requirements of privacy and security. There are always risks and benefits to using technology, so ensure that you understand them and share any concerns with your counsellor.