“Do I need counselling?” is a common question. There is stigma attached to mental health issues, despite more reports emerging and showing just how common it is to suffer with anxiety and depression at some point in our lives. Sometimes life changes can be overwhelming. Living in a pandemic is a current example of this and will resonate with many. Life stressors can also bring back, or “trigger”, thoughts and feelings from difficult experiences that happened a long time ago. The support of friends, mindfulness and exercise can be enough, but sometimes they're not and that’s where counselling comes in.
Talking therapy aims to give a person who is going through changes or difficulties – be it with self, family, love or work – some time to be heard and understood. It aims to help somebody make sense of and come to terms with experiences, thoughts and feelings that can be painful, confusing and lonely. Further down the page, I list some mental health issues that I have experience with. Please contact me for an initial consultation to see if the therapy I provide is right for you.
I put the relationship with my client at the heart of my practice. My aim is to provide a safe, non-judgemental and warm space for you to talk through your issues and for you to be heard and understood. There is enormous power in formulating your own life story and put difficulties into words. My purpose as a psychotherapeutic counsellor is to work together with you and help give you the strength to move forward.
My approach is integrative. This means that through training and experience I have developed a ‘tool kit’ of approaches that I tailor to my individual clients' needs, to help promote acceptance, understanding and growth. I have worked for four years in non-profit settings and for the NHS, and I have a particular interest in relationship issues, anxiety, depression and trauma. I believe in treating the whole person, and in the value of 'checking in' on everyday stresses as well as addressing deeper thoughts and feelings.
My experience includes, but is not limited to, the following: Abuse, Anger, Anxiety, Bereavement, Depression, Divorce, Family issues, PTSD, Relationship issues, Self-esteem, Separation and loss, Social Anxiety, Stress, Trauma and Work Related issues.
It can be useful to keep a practical focus for the therapy and really dig down on specific problematic thoughts and behaviours. ‘Blending in’ some weeks of thought exercises and diary work can throw new light on negative thought patterns.
Most, if not all, integrative therapists believe that for therapy to be beneficial, a client must be met with the three ‘core conditions’ as laid out in person-centred therapy. They are unconditional positive regard (UPR), empathy and congruence – acceptance, warmth and honesty.
Psychodynamic therapy has its roots in psychoanalysis and can focus on childhood, early relationships and on how we see ourselves in the world. This is the approach which brings 'the unconscious' into the work.