Counselor’s Guide

Keep it Real

A Tool for Counselors

As a school counselor, you may often find yourself as a captain, invited to navigate the wild labyrinth of student issues and life. You are looked at as a source of support, resources, wisdom and strategies. Your input and conversation can be key in giving a student a feeling of safety and a new sense of hope.
Keep It Real can be used as a supportive tool which aides in your exploration of a student’s dilemma, patterns of relating, strengths and vulnerabilities.
Because it was structured to access a wide variety of information, it can offer a student:

  • A Vehicle for Self-Disclosure
  • A Place to Own and Discover Necessary Insights into their World.
  • A Jumping Off Point to Discuss Sensitive Issues
  • A Structure for Family Therapy/Conflict Resolution
  • A Place of Refuge, Silliness and Expression!

Through Keep It Real you can:

  • Teach Interpersonal and Social Skills
  • Invite New Perspectives
  • Practice Assertiveness and Empowerment Skills……….as you “do therapeutic interventions!”
  • Assist a student in developing independent thought processes, to benefit their development and growth
  • Through the non-confrontational questions, the student will feel safer to disclose more.
  • Move through communication blocks and barriers

So, the beauty of this game can be used as both DISCOVERY and RELEASE of personal material that is waiting to come out!!!
As you play:

Emphasize the Creation of “Safe Space”

Traumatized or disturbed individuals often feel lost, bereft and alone. Let them know that this is “their” time when they can say and do what they want. This is a sacred and safe space in which they can share themselves and be accepted 100%.

Focus on Feelings, Thoughts & Ideas

So much of a student’s life is about performance, expectations and achievement. Many students are pressed, pressured, overwhelmed and their inner lives are completely ignored. Stress the importance of acknowledging that they have thoughts, feelings and ideas and that “knowing” what these are is extremely important.

Demonstrate Individuality

Keep It Real is a game of Authenticity! Encourage your student to share their unique and specific perceptions and talents.

Encourage Self-Disclosure

You can very easily point out that this is a game of “practicing” how to share your thoughts, feelings, etc.” Let the student know that everything takes practice and that it may be uncomfortable at first, but that the more they play, the better they will feel.

Taking Risks

Many times, the “art of self-knowledge” is scary. Encourage your student to take a risk, say something they never dared, try something they think they can’t do, open up to an idea that is different than their social group or family. Explain how we grow when we stretch outside our comfort zones and take risks.

An Open Door to Change

During your playing session, describe that each time you play the game, it will be different, and that “much of life is change.” Use the “Challenge Cards” to learn about what we need and how we can change.
Describe to your student that their will and their vision have a lot to do with the outcome of their situation and that now matter how dire or difficult, if they want to change, they can do it…one step at a time.

Taking the Lead

As your student develops their comfort level with self-disclosure, risk-taking and openness to change, offer them opportunities to lead the game, choose the way it is played and give input. This will give permission and help your student develop leadership skills.

as you help your student
navigate the perils, pitfall, ecstasies and challenges
in life through

Keep It Real.

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