5 Ways to be a Culturally Responsive Therapist - Mental Health Match (2022)

By: Dr. Jessica Jackson

The death of George Floyd has brought discussions of racism to the forefront of America, and ultimately into the therapy room. For many clinicians, discussions of racism, discrimination, and/or the role that race plays in our daily lives has come up in therapy sessions. If it hasn’t happened yet, it will.

Our clients do not live in bubbles and are not exempt from the current social and political climate, especially people of color. Sue & Sue (2012) put it best, “…counseling and psychotherapy do not take place in a vacuum, isolated from the larger sociopolitical influences of our societal climate” (pg. 91).

I’ve received many questions and took part in many discussions with colleagues about how to help BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color) clients, specifically Black clients. My answer: practice cultural humility and culturally responsive therapy.

(Video) How Culture And Race Can Impact Identifying And Treating Mental Health Conditions

Moving beyond cultural competence to cultural humility and responsiveness

Cultural competence is a phrase I am sure has popped up in recent discussions you’ve had with your colleagues. For many of us, cultural competence is what was taught in graduate school. It was the standard for discussions of diversity for years in psychology. Cultural competence was a term that came into prominence in the early 1980s thanks to Derald Wing Sue. Culture competence is model of developing skills, knowledge and self-awareness to be more effective in working with diverse populations. While cultural competence is an important start; I encourage you to think and reflect deeper.

The American Psychological Association Race & Ethnicity guidelines and increased multicultural emphasis in training programs have helped the field of psychology evolve beyond just possession of knowledge and skills of other cultures — moving from a way of doing to a way of being. More and more we recognize that our cultural identity and that of our client are both salient aspects of the therapy dynamic (American Psychological Association (2003). Cultural humility and cultural responsivity are building blocks to understanding our clients and the cultural context that shapes their distress, building blocks that help us provide needed support on a deeper level.

Davis et al. (2011) breaks down humility into intrapersonal humility and interpersonal humility. To practice cultural humility, we must have both an accurate view of ourselves and respect for others without an attitude of supremacy or superiority.

Cultural humility is a continuum of:

(Video) Culturally Adapting Evidence-Based Practices

  1. Inward self-awareness,
  2. Outward valuing of others and
  3. Upward growth. (Hook et al. 2013).

Culturally responsive therapy is responding to and making room for the client’s culture in the therapeutic process. This may look like:

  • Asking questions about their family’s cultural background and beliefs,
  • Asking about their use of emotional expression, and
  • Learning their perspective of their symptoms, even if it’s unrelated to the presenting problem.

As therapists, we cannot be culturally responsive if we have not first worked on developing cultural humility.

Developing cultural humility: the pre-work

Cultural humility is a mind-set shift and a career-long commitment. For those looking to get started on this journey, here are three skills you can begin working on. I call this the pre-work, the work that should happen on your own time before you enter the therapy room.:

  1. Self-awareness – Engage in self-reflection and self-understanding to develop an accurate view of self. Take the time to reflect on how your different social identities (e.g. religion, sexuality, generation, acculturation, socioeconomic status, education, ethnicity etc.) have influenced your worldview. Engage in reading, dialogues, workshops etc. that help you have a better understanding of your privileges, biases and values.
  2. Valuing of others – Be curious! Demonstrate a willingness to learn from others around you (e.g. colleagues, clients, friends etc.) and respond from a place of genuineness and authenticity. It’s okay to not know everything, in fact, admitting ignorance and asking questions is a cornerstone of humility. A caveat to this point is to be careful that you are not placing the responsibility on clients to teach you about their culture. There is a difference between asking someone to teach you about racism and asking to learn their experience of racism. Finding the balance is necessary.
  3. Growth – Remember, practicing cultural humility is a process. This is not a skill that we build overnight, but a continuum of continuing learning throughout our careers as clinicians. Push through discomfort and anxiety related to cultural conversations and enter conversations acknowledging that you may not feel your best throughout the conversation.

How to be a culturally responsive therapist

Once we have engaged in the pre-work, we can then focus on building on our increased self-awareness to foster empathy for clients. Culturally responsive therapy requires this empathy to truly understand and conceptualize how the client’s social identities interact and influence the client’s perception of their distress.

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I have outlined five tips for doing culturally responsive work in the therapy room:

  1. One-size doesn’t fit all – Be mindful of how client’s social identities interact to make them unique. Appreciate individual differences and approach clients with an understanding of and respect for the client’s needs and cultural values. Be open-minded and recognize that there are multiple ways of viewing the world.
  2. Consider how your values, worldview, upbringing, etc. may influence your client’s perception of, rapport with, or trust in you. – Conceptualization and diagnosis often go hand in hand. Consider how your client’s behaviors and decisions may be guided by their cultural values and beliefs.
  3. Ask yourself, are you being tolerant, inclusive or integrative? – Consider culture at each step of the appointment, from advertising for clients to the termination session with a client. Tolerance is acknowledging there are differences between you and your client. Inclusivity is asking them their social identities and cultural background and considering it in your conceptualization. Integration is all of the above and having office décor reflective of different cultures or having intake forms/screeners in multiple languages. The goal in culturally responsive therapy is demonstrating integration. Georgetown University’s National Center for Cultural Competency has a checklist available to self-assess the inclusiveness of your practice.
  4. Acknowledge what is happening in the world outside of the therapy room – Even if your client does not bring it up, it’s okay to open the door for the discussion. They may be waiting to see if you’re comfortable bringing up a certain topic (e.g. racism, police brutality etc.). Asking a client how they are holding up with everything happening this week (note what’s been in the news or all-over social media etc.) is a general way to make it clear you are open to the conversation. Keep in mind, acknowledging a topic does not mean that it has to be the focus of treatment, but could be helpful in establishing rapport.
  5. Don’t make assumptions – Ask clients how they identify. Don’t assume, based on your client’s outward appearance, that they don’t want to discuss certain topics OR that they relate to specific topics. We all have fallen prey to stereotyping. Work on being intentional about not generalizing based on prior knowledge or prior experience with similar clients. For example, with the current COVID-19 pandemic, some Black American clients may be more focused on grief or financial concerns than racism. That’s not to say racism may not be important to them but may not be what’s most affecting them in session. In this case acknowledging the racism that is occurring may help the client feel more comfortable addressing the other concerns.

Barriers to being a culturally responsive therapist

As you practice these skills, be mindful of common barriers that may get in our way:

  1. Fear
  2. Lack of preparedness for emotionally charged conversations
  3. Feelings of inadequacy
  4. Politeness protocol, and
  5. Colorblindness.

For example, fear of saying the wrong thing often goes along with feeling incompetent, especially when addressing a topic, you don’t normally discuss. It’s okay to name this anxiety in the therapy room, as long as the intention is to communicate, “I might get this wrong, but I’m willing to take the risk to create a necessary space for my client.” What is not okay is not doing the self-work or preparing for the discussion and expecting the client to educate you in session.

It’s helpful to give yourself time before the session to prepare and reflect on what you want to say. Jumping into this conversation without thoughtfulness or intentionality could disrupt the rapport, the opposite of the goal.

(Video) Counseling: Multicultural Clients

Lastly, I challenge you to push past colorblindness and politeness protocol. Telling a client that you do not see color is essentially telling them that you do not see the totality of who they are. It is not polite, it not good etiquette, it is not a compliment. If you feel the pull to tell a client you do not see color, I encourage you to pause and reflect on why that may feel safer for you.

We all make mistakes. Even when we have the best of intentions to support our client’s and meet them where they are, we can still get in our own way. There is simply no way to know it all, but we can communicate to our clients that we’re ready to listen and meet them where they are to support them.

Remember, cultural humility is being comfortable admitting what we don’t know. Leaning into this uncomfortableness has the potential to lead to deeper, richer connections with clients; making it well worth the effort.

Dr. Jessica Jackson is a counseling psychologist with a private practice in Houston, TX. She has provided mental health services in correctional facilities, university counseling centers, high schools and healthcare settings.

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Jessica is a 2019 recipient of Society of Counseling Psychology, Section for Ethnic & Racial Diversity Outstanding Service to Diverse/Underserved Communities Award. Jessica is an alumna of the APA Council of National Psychological Associations for the Advancement of Ethnic Minority Interests (CNPAAEMI) Leadership Development Institute Fellow.

As a practitioner-scientist -advocate, her research focus has primarily centered around barriers to outpatient treatment, culturally competent clinical practice, race-related stress and racial trauma.

Connect with Dr. Jackson on Twitter, Instagram, or her website: www.drjlauren.com.

FAQs

What are 3 examples of strategies to help improve culturally competent care? ›

WHAT IS CULTURAL COMPETENCE IN HEALTH CARE?
  • Provide interpreter services.
  • Recruit and retain minority staff.
  • Provide training to increase cultural awareness, knowledge, and skills.
  • Coordinate with traditional healers.
  • Use community health workers.
  • Incorporate culture-specific attitudes and values into health promotion tools.

How do I become a culturally competent counselor? ›

How do I become culturally competent?
  1. Learn about yourself. Get started by exploring your own historical roots, beliefs and values, says Robert C. ...
  2. Learn about different cultures. ...
  3. Interact with diverse groups. ...
  4. Attend diversity-focused conferences. ...
  5. Lobby your department.

What does it mean to be a culturally competent therapist? ›

Culturally competent counselors are accurately aware of culturally learned assumptions by themselves and their clients, comprehend the culturally relevant facts and information about a client' culture and are able to intervene skillfully to bring about positive change through counseling.

How do you become a culturally competent clinician? ›

Clinicians can develop their skills in cultural competence by incorporating questions regarding the meaning of illness, social context “review of systems”, and negotiating explanatory models and treatment options into their interviews with patients, whether they be sick or well.

What are five points of cultural diversity in healthcare? ›

In her model, Campinha-Bacote describes five interrelated concepts: (1) cultural awareness, (2) cultural knowledge, (3) cultural skill, (4) cultural encounters, and (5) cultural desire.

What are 4 key areas one must recognize in order to ensure cultural competence? ›

Cultural competence has four major components: awareness, attitude, knowledge, and skills.

What are the 6 stages of cultural competence? ›

The Cross framework emphasizes that the process of achieving cultural competency occurs along a continuum and sets forth six stages including: 1) cultural destructiveness, 2) cultural incapacity, 3) cultural blindness, 4) cultural pre-competence, 5) cultural competency and 6) cultural proficiency.

What is an example of cultural competence in healthcare? ›

Examples of Cultural Competence in Nursing

Speaking in terms that are easy for the patient to follow and understand. Not judging or disregarding a patient's belief and religious background, but encouraging them to do what works best for them. Empathizing with the patient at all times.

What are the main characteristics of the culturally skilled counselor? ›

Culturally skilled counselors are aware of and work to eliminate biases, prejudices, and discriminatory practices. They are aware of sociopolitical contexts in conducting evaluation and providing interventions and are sensitive to issues of oppression, sexism, elitism, and racism.

What are some examples of cultural competence? ›

For example, educators who respect diversity and are culturally competent: have an understanding of, and honour, the histories, cultures, languages, traditions, child rearing practices. value children's different capacities and abilities. respect differences in families' home lives.

Why is it important for therapists to be culturally competent? ›

Incorporating cultural competency and cultural sensitivity into mental health services enables therapists to accommodate and respect differences in opinions, values, and attitudes of minoritized people, such as communities of color and LGBTQ communities.

How can I make my therapy more inclusive? ›

Here are a few ways to make your practice more inclusive, affordable, and accessible.
  1. Offer sliding scale options.
  2. Take on a few free to very low fee clients ($5-10)
  3. Provide teletherapy services.
  4. Educate yourself on how folks are limited in accessibility to therapy.
21 Jan 2020

How do I become more culturally competent in healthcare? ›

Becoming a Culturally Competent Health Care Organization
  1. Collect race, ethnicity and language preference (REAL) data.
  2. Identify and report disparities.
  3. Provide culturally and linguistically competent care.
  4. Develop culturally competent disease management programs.
  5. Increase diversity and minority workforce pipelines.

How do you incorporate culture in therapy? ›

Appreciate individual differences and approach clients with an understanding of and respect for the client's needs and cultural values. Be open-minded and recognize that there are multiple ways of viewing the world. Consider how your values, worldview, upbringing, etc.

How can a therapist demonstrate cultural humility? ›

Cultural humility also involves an interpersonal stance that is other oriented rather than self-focused in regard to the cultural background and experience of the client. The culturally humble therapist is interested in and open to exploring the client's cultural background and experience.

What are the 5 cultural competence? ›

Contained within this guide is a walkthrough of the five building blocks of cultural competence: open attitude, self-awareness, awareness of others, cultural knowledge, and cultural skills.

How do you address cultural diversity in healthcare? ›

A review of culturally competent healthcare industry systems identified 5 interventions to improve cultural competence: (1) gear programs to recruit and retain diverse staff members, (2) cultural competency training for healthcare providers, (3) use of interpreter services to ensure individuals from different ...

What 4 factors affect cultural sensitivity? ›

Certain factors can affect cultural sensitivity. These factors include religion, ethnicity(race), national origin(language), or gender.

What are the 3 three principles that are required of you to be culturally competent within your work space and or personal environment? ›

These attributes will guide you in developing cultural competence: Self-knowledge and awareness about one's own culture. Awareness of one's own cultural worldview. Experience and knowledge of different cultural practices.

What are five actions you can take to understand diverse client cultures? ›

7 Steps Nurses Can Take to Provide Culturally Sensitive Care
  • Awareness. As with any social issue, the first step is awareness. ...
  • Avoid Making Assumptions. ...
  • Learn About Other Cultures. ...
  • Build Trust and Rapport. ...
  • Overcome Language Barriers. ...
  • Educate Patients About Medical Practices. ...
  • Practice Active Listening.
15 Jan 2022

What are the 4 levels of cultural awareness? ›

The Four Levels of Cultural Awareness
  • I. UNCONSCIOUS INCOMPETENCE:
  • II. CONSCIOUS INCOMPETENCE:
  • III. CONSCIOUS COMPETENCE:
  • IV. UNCONSCIOUS COMPETENCE:

WHO identified five levels of cultural awareness? ›

Culhane-Perea et al1, describes five levels of cultural competence with respect to health care.

What is the most important element in regards to cultural competence? ›

Overall, cultural competence has three important components: active listening, demonstrating empathy, and effective engagement.

How can cultural barriers to health care be overcome? ›

Interpreting Nonverbal Cues
  1. Ask questions that demonstrate respect and concern.
  2. Ask questions that help reveal the patient's understanding of the health issue at hand.
  3. Explain their own perceptions.
  4. Acknowledge differences in perceptions.
  5. Begin to negotiate treatment plans.

Why is culture important in healthcare? ›

Cultural respect benefits consumers, stakeholders, and communities and supports positive health outcomes. Because several elements can influence health communication—including behaviors, language, customs, beliefs, and perspectives—cultural respect is also critical for achieving accuracy in medical research.

What is culturally responsive Counselling practice? ›

Culturally sensitive therapy is an approach to psychotherapy that emphasizes the therapist's understanding of a client's background and belief system as it relates to their race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender, or other important elements that make up someone's culture and/or identity.

What are culturally appropriate intervention strategies? ›

Culturally Appropriate Intervention Strategies: A counselor with cultural competence respects their client's religious views, values, beliefs, indigenous practices, and languages. Counselors must understand the characteristics of therapy and its impact on cultural groups.

What is cultural context in Counselling? ›

Counseling, like all behaviors, takes place in a cultural context. Cultural. differencesoccurnot only between societies, but also within societies where. ethnicity, gender, social class, and other subcultures interact. Understanding.

What are the five components of the asked cultural competence Questions? ›

Cultural competemility is defined as the synergistic process between cultural humility and cultural competence in which cultural humility permeates the five components of cultural competence: cultural awareness, cultural knowledge, cultural skill, cultural desire, and cultural encounters.

How do you show cultural awareness? ›

Use these tips from the American Psychological Association to be more culturally aware:
  1. Think beyond race and ethnicity. A person's culture is shaped by more than the color of their skin or the way that they dress. ...
  2. Learn by asking. ...
  3. Make local connections. ...
  4. Pay attention to non-verbal behaviors. ...
  5. Exchange stories.
22 Jul 2019

Why is cultural sensitivity important in healthcare? ›

Cultural sensitivity can help bridge the gap pertaining to social and healthcare injustices that occur within diverse groups of people by creating, and implementing a feasible model of understanding others through compassion and dignity.

Why is it important for mental health professionals to become familiar with the cultural background of their clients? ›

Race, ethnicity, and cultural background may influence a client's identity and life circumstances. Other factors, such as gender and gender identity, sexual orientation, age, socioeconomic status, religion, and ability may also play into the context of a given client's mental health, and relational or personal issues.

How do you deal with culturally diverse clients? ›

5 Best Practices for Serving Diverse Customers
  1. Know your clientele. Spend time talking with clients to learn about where they are from. ...
  2. Seek out culture-specific knowledge of your customers. ...
  3. Recognize patterns for communicating. ...
  4. Attract diverse customers by having a diverse workforce. ...
  5. Build relationships.
21 Jun 2012

What are cultural considerations in psychology? ›

Culture impacts how we see the world, and make sense out of life: how we conceptualise meaning from thoughts, behaviours and events. It also influences customs, norms, values and belief systems as well as how we understand, interpret and respond – to ourselves, and others.

How do you develop cultural competence in counseling? ›

How do I become culturally competent?
  1. Learn about yourself. Get started by exploring your own historical roots, beliefs and values, says Robert C. ...
  2. Learn about different cultures. ...
  3. Interact with diverse groups. ...
  4. Attend diversity-focused conferences. ...
  5. Lobby your department.

Why is inclusion important in mental health? ›

Why Inclusivity in Mental Health Care Is So Important? They allow you access to essential healthcare services like therapy and medication by having therapists and doctors available from various backgrounds and demographics. They encourage effective problem-solving efforts.

What is culturally sensitive therapy? ›

Culturally sensitive therapy is an approach to psychotherapy that emphasizes the therapist's understanding of a client's background and belief system as it relates to their race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender, or other important elements that make up someone's culture and/or identity.

What are 3 examples of strategies to help improve culturally competent care? ›

WHAT IS CULTURAL COMPETENCE IN HEALTH CARE?
  • Provide interpreter services.
  • Recruit and retain minority staff.
  • Provide training to increase cultural awareness, knowledge, and skills.
  • Coordinate with traditional healers.
  • Use community health workers.
  • Incorporate culture-specific attitudes and values into health promotion tools.

What are the 6 stages of cultural competence? ›

The Cross framework emphasizes that the process of achieving cultural competency occurs along a continuum and sets forth six stages including: 1) cultural destructiveness, 2) cultural incapacity, 3) cultural blindness, 4) cultural pre-competence, 5) cultural competency and 6) cultural proficiency.

What are five points of cultural diversity in healthcare? ›

In her model, Campinha-Bacote describes five interrelated concepts: (1) cultural awareness, (2) cultural knowledge, (3) cultural skill, (4) cultural encounters, and (5) cultural desire.

What are some examples of cultural competence? ›

For example, educators who respect diversity and are culturally competent: have an understanding of, and honour, the histories, cultures, languages, traditions, child rearing practices. value children's different capacities and abilities. respect differences in families' home lives.

How do you become culturally humble? ›

Some practical ways to grow cultural humility include: 1) Intrapersonal: Intentionally engage in self-critique and reflexivity to recognize and accept biases and assumptions 2) Interpersonal: Engage in mindful active listening where clinicians ask genuine open-ended questions of the people they encounter to understand ...

How do you become a culturally competent clinician? ›

Clinicians can develop their skills in cultural competence by incorporating questions regarding the meaning of illness, social context “review of systems”, and negotiating explanatory models and treatment options into their interviews with patients, whether they be sick or well.

How can I make my therapy more inclusive? ›

Here are a few ways to make your practice more inclusive, affordable, and accessible.
  1. Offer sliding scale options.
  2. Take on a few free to very low fee clients ($5-10)
  3. Provide teletherapy services.
  4. Educate yourself on how folks are limited in accessibility to therapy.
21 Jan 2020

What can a therapist do to increase inclusivity in their practice? ›

Six Tips for Therapists to Be More Queer and Trans Inclusive in Their Practice
  1. Educate yourself. Do you know the terms you should be using? ...
  2. Identify your blocks. ...
  3. Find local resources. ...
  4. Add pronouns to your website. ...
  5. De-gender your conversation. ...
  6. Reflect on your practice environment as a whole.
28 Sept 2021

Why is it important for counselors to be culturally competent? ›

Why is Cultural Competence Important? Cultural competence encourages the acknowledgement and acceptance of differences in appearance, behavior and culture. In this field, you will encounter diverse clients from a wide range of backgrounds.

What are some examples of cultural competence? ›

For example, educators who respect diversity and are culturally competent: have an understanding of, and honour, the histories, cultures, languages, traditions, child rearing practices. value children's different capacities and abilities. respect differences in families' home lives.

Which is an example of culturally competent care? ›

Examples of Cultural Competence in Nursing

Speaking in terms that are easy for the patient to follow and understand. Not judging or disregarding a patient's belief and religious background, but encouraging them to do what works best for them. Empathizing with the patient at all times.

How could you develop or improve your social and cultural awareness provide at least three strategies? ›

Use these tips from the American Psychological Association to be more culturally aware:
  • Think beyond race and ethnicity. A person's culture is shaped by more than the color of their skin or the way that they dress. ...
  • Learn by asking. ...
  • Make local connections. ...
  • Pay attention to non-verbal behaviors. ...
  • Exchange stories.
22 Jul 2019

What are some ways that you can achieve cultural competence at work? ›

Tips for improving cultural competence in the workplace
  • Train for global citizenship.
  • Practice communication skills.
  • Practice good manners.
  • Encourage discussion.
  • Build teamwork.
  • Practice listening.

What are the 5 cultural competence? ›

Contained within this guide is a walkthrough of the five building blocks of cultural competence: open attitude, self-awareness, awareness of others, cultural knowledge, and cultural skills.

What are the 6 stages of cultural competence? ›

The Cross framework emphasizes that the process of achieving cultural competency occurs along a continuum and sets forth six stages including: 1) cultural destructiveness, 2) cultural incapacity, 3) cultural blindness, 4) cultural pre-competence, 5) cultural competency and 6) cultural proficiency.

How do I become more culturally competent in healthcare? ›

Becoming a Culturally Competent Health Care Organization
  1. Collect race, ethnicity and language preference (REAL) data.
  2. Identify and report disparities.
  3. Provide culturally and linguistically competent care.
  4. Develop culturally competent disease management programs.
  5. Increase diversity and minority workforce pipelines.

Why is cultural competence important in mental health? ›

Not knowing, or asking, about a person's culture, history, beliefs, and intergenerational trauma, can lead to devastating mental health consequences, including misunderstanding, misdiagnosis, underdiagnosis, discrimination, and ultimately, ineffective, and misguided treatment, particularly for Black Americans.

Why cultural competence is important in healthcare? ›

Cultural competence improves communication, which keeps patients safer. Clear communication allows healthcare providers to collect accurate medical information. It also encourages active dialogues in which patients and providers can ask questions, correct misunderstandings, and build trust.

Why is cultural competence important in psychology? ›

Cultural competency can help therapists foster a higher quality relationship by assisting clients to feel more comfortable and understood. In turn, high-quality therapeutic relationships can boost the success of treatment, leading to positive outcomes.

What are 4 culturally appropriate work practices? ›

SEVEN PRACTICES YOU CAN IMPLEMENT TO INCREASE CULTURAL AWARENESS IN THE WORKPLACE
  • Get training for global citizenship. ...
  • Bridge the culture gap with good communication skills. ...
  • Practice good manners. ...
  • Celebrate traditional holidays, festivals, and food. ...
  • Observe and listen to foreign customers and colleagues.
22 Sept 2017

How do we become culturally responsive? ›

7 Culturally Responsive Teaching Strategies
  1. Activate students' prior knowledge. ...
  2. Make learning contextual. ...
  3. Consider your classroom setup. ...
  4. Form relationships. ...
  5. Discuss social and political issues. ...
  6. Tap into students' cultural capital. ...
  7. Incorporate popular culture.
19 Nov 2020

What are 3 ways to promote diversity? ›

What are the best ways to promote diversity?
  • Educate Managers on the Benefits of Diversity in the Workplace.
  • Create More Inclusive Workplace Policies.
  • Communicate Clearly and Create Employee-Led Task Forces.
  • Offer Meaningful Opportunities for Employee Engagement.
  • Create Mentorship Programs.
  • [
22 Aug 2022

What are the 3 three principles that are required of you to be culturally competent within your work space and or personal environment? ›

These attributes will guide you in developing cultural competence: Self-knowledge and awareness about one's own culture. Awareness of one's own cultural worldview. Experience and knowledge of different cultural practices.

How can you be culturally sensitive with clients with a range of identities? ›

Use inclusive language in written and verbal discussions. Ask each client for their preferred pronouns, even when you feel sure of their gender. Normalizing the concept of preferred pronouns can help communities become more aware and accepting of gender-nonconforming people.

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