We recommend that you continue to hone your conceptualization skills by explicitly using them. Only with continued exercise does conceptualization become second nature. Consider the three cases of Ruth, Harry, and Joel. For each case, ask the following questions:

1. How and what am I thinking about this client?

2. What assumptions am I making about the client’s career history? What assumptions am I making about the client’s current career concerns?

3. How might personal concerns influence the client’s career concerns?

4. How does the client’s current context (gender, race, family, disability, social class, sexual orientation) influence his or her perceptions of opportunities or barriers of options?

5. Which theoretical approaches are most useful in thinking about this client, and what hypotheses do the approaches suggest?

6. What specific cultural and gender issues are relevant with this client?

7. How do my culture and gender influence how I am thinking about this client?

8. Am I imposing my values on the client?