Are Counselors Born or Made?

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This discussion relates only to the very best of counselors. A list of the most influential counselors outlined in an article by By Kendra Cherry titled ‘A Look at Eminent Thinkers in Psychology’ includes the following:

1. Sigmund Freud: Time Magazine named Freud as one of the influential therapists of the 1900’s in an article which appeared in 2001. Later in 2006 an article which appeared in Newsweek in 2006 he is described as "history's most debunked doctor"(Newsweek 2006). Even though his theories generate much controversy, he is still referred to as the father of psychoanalysis.

2. B.F. Skinner: He was one of the prominent propionates of a theory called behaviourism. He also constructed what became known as the ‘Skinner Box’. Within this box, he discovered that a rat or a bird could be trained to obtain food by pressing a button. This he called ‘Operant Conditioning’ and ‘Negative Reinforcement’. According to Martin Fiebert, Professor of clinical Psychology at California State University, he even went to extremes of placing his own baby daughter in his ‘Skinner Box’ for a whole year to promote his experiments.

3. Erik Erikson: Erikson’s broadened Frued’s theory by studying children and Native American Indians which also expanded psychoanalytic theory to encompass entire lifespan development.

4. Ivan Pavlov: Pavlov is famous for his work which he described as ‘conditional reflex’. He demonstrated this through his experiments with dogs. He drilled holes through the cheeks of dogs where he inserted a probe to detect salivation. He then conditioned them by ringing a bell when they were presented with food. Eventually, he discovered that just by the ringing of a bell the dogs would begin to salivate in anticipation of fo...

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...te’ In this industry bloodlines and breeding is the first deciding factor.

Finally one's opinion may be in agreement that according to Pete Saunders “Being a better counsellor is like being a accomplished musician, in particular a singer. While voice training, and singing exercises may be some help. Without possessing a natural gift for singing that person will be doing the equivalent of trying to get blood from a stone. Without some natural ability and skills, all education in the world cannot produce a good counselor” (Pete Saunders 2011).

It seems from the evidence obtained that both inherited ability and education are necessary to produce a good counselor. However when deciding which has the most influence, what natural talents they are born with seems to be of more importance. Therefore, the assumption that they are born seems the most logical.

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