The practitioner's personal qualities
are of the utmost importance to
clients. Many of the personal qualities considered important in the
provision of play therapy services have an ethical or moral component and are therefore
considered as virtues or good personal
It is inappropriate to prescribe that all practitioners possess these
qualities, since it is fundamental that these personal qualities are deeply
rooted in the person concerned and developed out of personal commitment
rather than the requirement of an external authority. Personal qualities to
which practitioners are strongly encouraged to aspire include:
Each of these qualities is explained below.
Back to deciding what
to do if a child has an emotional or behaviour problem
|Empathy - the ability to
understand how others feel - to put yourself in the client's position
||Experiential training will
increase your understanding of what the children are feeling during play
therapy. You will also need to empathise with parent/carers, referrers
and others involved.
|Sincerity - ‘you do what you say’
||To gain children's trust.
|Integrity - straightforwardness, honesty and coherence.
|Resilience - work without being personally diminished.
||You must not let the, sometimes harrowing children's experiences 'get to you'.
|Respect - show appropriate esteem to others
||Never patronise the children.
|Humility - acknowledge own strengths and weaknesses
||No one is perfect, the children will respect your admission of mistakes and weaknesses.
|Competence - effective deployment of skills
||Play therapy competencies must be acquired through experiential training that is practice based.
|Fairness - consistent decisions and actions.
||Treat all children equally - they will soon find out, if you don't
|Wisdom - sound judgement.
||This comes through experience, clinical supervision, reflection on practise, clinical governance and
continuous professional development.
||Being able to take decisions and act in spite of known fears, risks, uncertainty and opposition.