Conducting my first interview

This semester comes with a generous pile of projects/assignments, group and solo. Last night I began working on my first which was my first interview and assessment. We had the option to work with someone from class or a friend/non-relative. I chose to ask my friend, primarily because  I knew if I chose a classmate they would be asking me the same questions and I preferred not to be the client in this exercise but focus on the role of clinician, which is what the assignment truly was.

I admit I had a little trouble with the construction of my genogram. It was my first time creating one and her family tree is a bit nontraditional, which I really like because this is a huge learning opportunity for me, so I am going to reach out to my professor to determine how to fill in the gaps.

Overall though I feel good about the interview and assessment. I recognize that this exercise and how I experienced the interview/assessment process is not completely realistic because I have a personal relationship with the person with whom the interview was conducted. My first real interview will probably feel a bit more uncomfortable because it will be with someone with who I am unacquainted. This was a nice first step though. It allowed me to practice without all of the other components playing a role.

After gathering all the information for my assignment my girlfriend and I spent sometime catching up. She is in a transition period in her life and has decided to take this time to do some work on herself. Every time I am with her I witness her growth first hand and without meaning to sound condescending, I am proud of her. Proud in the sense that I know it takes courage to look critically at yourself and admit that there is room for improvement and then to work consciously to achieve that betterment. She seems to be in a really healthy place right now and I am happy for her.

Next week I get to flex this interview/assessment muscle again. My next project is a group assignment with a classmate. It is another interview, this time with less detail, no genogram but it is to be recorded. Eek. This time to purpose is to focus more on our style of interviewing, the words we use, our nonverbal signals etc. By recording the interview we can go back, review and critique ourselves. While I absolutely see the merit in an exercise like this I do find the idea of being recorded a bit rattling. My nerves will subside though and I am sure I will do fine. The plan is for my classmate whom I’ll be working with to come to my house next week and we will take turns playing the roles of client and clinician. This is a new experience for me as well, to have a classmate over that is. I am a bit guarded at school, I have always liked to keep work/school and my personal lives separate. I do not share much with classmates about my personal life, on the rare occasion that a true friendship blossoms I open up a bit more but for the most part I like to focus on school at school and home at home. Keeping these two worlds separate has helped me to keep balance over the years. I am not overly concerned about having a classmate over but I do feel a little trepidation at the thought of allowing someone into my private world.

For now I will focus on completing my genogram and other assignments for the week, I will deal with next week, next week.


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