Reflective practice is integral for developing counsellors to maintain self- awareness and to recognize influences upon one’s personal theory of counselling. In this exploratory narrative inquiry research, four doctoral level counselling psychologists participated to uncover “What are the personal stories of developing counsellors and in what ways are lived stories reflective of counsellors' personal theories of counselling?" The researcher employed a butterfly metaphor, and photographs to illustrate lived stories. Dawn, East, Crystal, Sean, and the researcher’s own lived stories elucidated personal counselling theories and approaches. The view that all theories are constructed portraits of theorists' lives is substantiated. A strong link between lived stories and preferred theories in counselling is demonstrated. Directions for future research are provided.


Narrative Inquiry, Counsellor Theory Development, Reflective Practice, and Metaphor

Publication Date


Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 4.0 International License.




Submission Location


To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.