Logo for The Counseling Center at Bay City, Green Bay, WI

You’ve found some good and helpful counseling in Green Bay, WI.

Moving forward, as you consider your counseling sessions, please know that each counseling relationship is like a fingerprint. It’s totally unique.

That said, here’s what you can expect in your early counseling sessions. We share this information with you because we know that understanding what to expect will help you feel more comfortable at your first session.

PLEASE NOTE: If you’d like only one session to talk through some things and get some advice, that’s fine with us. If that’s the case, we may not even complete any paperwork.

SESSION 1: The Initial Consultation (45 minutes)

It’s completely normal to feel a bit nervous at your first appointment, but those feelings will fade quickly as you begin to talk.

The Initial Consultation initiates the collaborative relationship we will have in the days ahead.

You get to know us, and we get to know you.

You get to see what it will feel like to work together.

This consultation, usually conducted by our Director of Counseling, helps us know which counselor is the best fit for you. It may also help us know if we need to refer you to a medical doctor or someone else.

At this first session we’ll review a welcome document, sign a Consent, and complete a Pre-Counseling Inventory. Afterwards, you’ll take home a Counseling Goals form that will prep you for the next appointment.

Click below to review the documents. You do not need to print these; we’ll provide them for you at the consultation. PLEASE NOTE: We are a mandatory reporting organization and will immediately report cases of abuse to local law-enforcement.

Welcome Document, The Counseling Center at Bay City, Initial Consultation
Consent to Counsel Document, The Counseling Center at Bay City, Initial Consultation
Pre-Counseling Inventory Document, The Counseling Center at Bay City, Initial Consultation
Counseling Goals Form, The Counseling Center at Bay City, Initial Consultation

Folder with the forms for the Initial Consultation at The Counseling Center at Bay City, Green Bay, WI
NOTE: There’s no need to print the forms you see above. We’ll provide them for you in a folder like this one.

SESSION 2: Goals Review (55 minutes)

In order for Session 2 to be helpful, you should set aside 30 minutes of uninterrupted time to carefully complete the Counseling Goals form you receive at the initial consultation.

Take your time. Think deeply.

Write more words rather than less–that helps you and us.

Careless work on the Goals will hinder your progress toward change and may indicate that you’re not ready to do the hard work that lies ahead.

You will bring the completed Counseling Goals to Session 2.

At Session 2 we’ll probably ask you many questions as we walk through the Goals together, and you’ll probably do most of the talking.

This session achieves three objectives:

  1. IT HELPS you understand and express your problems clearly.
  2. IT HELPS you look to the future and envision change.
  3. IT HELPS us thoroughly understand your struggle.

After this session you’ll probably have more clarity and a better understanding of yourself. You may also begin to experience some hope for the future if you don’t have that right now.

Depending on the pain and complexity of your situation, the goals review may take two full sessions (or longer).

Whatever it takes, that’s what we’ll do because we don’t want to rush this step.

At Session 2, your counseling may include some beginning helpful wisdom and you may be assigned some personalized do-at-home assignments.

SESSION 3: Assessment & Solutions Work Begins (55 minutes)

At this session and following is where we help you learn the desires and thinking patterns that may have shaped you and taken you to where you are now.

And we will work with you to help you change. (If you have experienced trauma or abuse, we will carefully help you walk through the pain at a pace that’s best for you.)

“We help you learn the desires and thinking patterns that may have shaped you…”

This sometimes happens using a Three Desires Self-Assessment because people are helped by a better understanding of themselves, and of God.

NOTE: Though anyone can benefit from the assessment, this step may not be applicable up-front for those who have been abused, for those needing grief counseling, and the like, when the reasons for the problem are already evident.

The Three Desires Self-Assessment sets us apart from typical counseling, psychology, and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT). CBT addresses a person’s thinking patterns. Addressing thoughts is important, but thoughts are often a result of desires, so therefore human desires must always be addressed.

Desires are deeper than thoughts. It is true for most people, that what they “want” is what generates most of their thoughts. Good counseling must address the human “heart”–the very core of the person.

“Desires are deeper than thoughts.”

A psychologist* (see note below) will typically address someone’s nature, nurture, thoughts, emotions, and behaviors, but the most effective kind of counseling must go deeper than all of these.

Effective counseling must address what people think about AND what they want in the deepest part of them.

This third appointment is where the hard work typically begins on your part. It’s hard to change, but as you show some grit, determination, and dependence on God, you’ll begin to notice change. No counselor, therapist, or psychologist has an easy-button or a magic bullet. If you’ve had a counselor approach your counseling like this, either they aren’t being honest or they don’t have much experience yet.

ADAGE: Do what you’ve always done–get what you’ve always gotten.

Good counseling usually has two important factors.

When you visit a doctor you want two things:

  • Proper diagnosis
  • Proper treatment

When you visit a counselor don’t you want these same things?

A counselor should help you recognize and understand the deepest reasons for the problems (diagnosis).

Then the counselor should know how to help you fix the problem (treatment). **

Diagnosis and treatment are often a basic part of the counseling process and yet it’s easy for counselors, therapists, and psychologists to fail at these. We find that many people state on their Pre-Counseling Inventory that their previous counseling wasn’t helpful.

That may be because the counseling didn’t address the deepest “why” beneath the problems, or because the counselor wasn’t able to provide the proper solutions.

** When people are struggling with such difficulties as depression or PTSD, we always recommend a full medical exam. If the depression is due to a medical or brain-based problem, then it is imperative that medical help is sought. With that being said, in our experience, we usually find that depression problems are tied to relationships, desires, and thinking.


This counseling in Green Bay that you’ve found is located on the campus of Bay City Baptist Church (www.baycity.org). This is also the location of Bay City Christian School (www.baycitychristian.org): 1840 Bond Street, Green Bay, WI 54303. If you need marriage counseling, couples counseling, anxiety counseling, depression counseling, or another form of counseling in the Green Bay or northeast Wisconsin area, please click the button below to take your first step.

Bay City Baptist Church building at 1840 Bond Street in Green Bay, WI
When you arrive for your counseling, here’s the building you’ll see as you approach 1840 Bond Street in Green Bay, WI. Enter the building where you see the word “Offices” above the door.

*A psychologist studies the cognitive, emotional, and social processes of people, along with their behaviors, through talk therapy and observation. They make a diagnosis by interpreting and recording how their patients relate to their surroundings and the most important people in their lives. Psychologists seek to understand and explain the thoughts, emotions, and behaviors of their clients.

This can be helpful for people, but many psychologists tend to struggle to explain human desires, which are the deepest cause of human behaviors. They can also struggle with knowing and applying the deepest solutions for the problems. While it is true that our nature and nurture do affect us deeply, there’s still something deeper. There’s a layer below nature and nurture. When it comes to diagnosis and solutions, counseling must go deeper than nature, nurture, thoughts, emotions, and mere behaviors. We must understand human desires because it is these desires that move us to action. We all “want” something(s) and we’re really good at chasing after what we want.