Friday, September 29, 2006

Did you hear the one about...

...the trainee bereavement counsellor? Thought not. It's hardly an obvious source of humourous anecdotes or witty quips. It's 5 years since I did my training, motivated primarily by the desire to understand my Probate clients and make the horrible process more positive for everybody. The resulting boost to my CV was a pleasant but secondary consideration.

I was only ever on it for the training. I wasn't going to become a 'counsellor'. It would mean having to start wearing diaphonous skirts, smell faintly of cat and talk in a softsensitivewithmylipsnotquiteopeningfullyheadononesidesmilingenigmatically voice, right?

Well, no, actually. I never did master that technique, although I did learn to kerb my natural instinct to want to proffer advice and just to sit back and listen. I couldn't turn my back on it when the training ended and I'm still a Cruse volunteer. It's given me some really rewarding moments and I've met some lovely people who have let me walk part of the way over a difficult path with them. But that's not what I set out to tell you about tonight.

I found my old course notes. They make interesting reading. Take this exercise as an example.



Asked to choose an item from a large selection of assorted toys, trinkets and miscellania, I picked a small tin box for no reason other than it was closest and wasn't in any way, shape cuddly.

I was then asked to jot down 3 things that I liked about it, followed by 3 things that I didn't like so much. I'm quite taurean when I write anything, as often shows in my thoughtless, banal comments and I was no different with this task, rattling off 6 points before most of my fellow delegates were still pondering hard on their chosen item.

Useful

Classy

Decorative


Empty

Small

Cheaper than it looks

We were then asked to place the words " I am " in front of each adjective. Boy! I definitely got it right with that last one!

6 Comments:

Blogger andrea said...

There's no shame in being cheap, small and empty if you are also decorative. Just ask Paris Hilton.

Hope you had a great weekend.

4:09 am  
Blogger Cherry Rolfe said...

I too did CRUSE training, but had a nervous breakdown instead of becoming a counsellor!!
Well done Cherry for doing such important work. What a fab attitrude you have to your career.

4:16 pm  
Blogger Within Without said...

Hey, CP...I might get around to doing a post in a meme kinda like, and yours was great.

But I also just want to say your experience with Cruse sounds like a great thing and worth admiring.

I entertained the thought of taking similar training a couple of years ago but opted instead to volunteer as an ESL (English as a Second Language) partner with immigrants to Canada.

I think it's great what you are doing.

And hope you had a great weekend trip.

Now, where's an item I can find to post six things about...

6:52 pm  
Blogger Cherrypie said...

Andrea - Who would have thought I had anything in common with Paris Hilton

Cherry - There but for the grace.

WW - I've thought about EFL but I'm not sure I have the patience

10:40 pm  
Blogger Ian T. said...

That trainee bereavement counselling sounds like it would be a valuable experience for becoming a writer, if nothing else. That naming exercise is a trick, maybe designed to help reveal how one sees oneself, but, I dunno it's a bit clever, clever - might be fun at a party :).

1:25 am  
Blogger Joyce said...

The visit to the funeral home is fresh on my mind--- that woman had way too much TRAINING and precious little horse sense!! I meant to write a post about the ridiculous-ness of after death rituals... maybe now I will.
Anyway-- I won't be doing the object exercise. Mine will turn out much like yours...

1:35 pm  

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