Hello and Welcome
'You have taken the first step; now I challenge you to take another ...' (Dan Poynter)
(and also reflexologist)
November 2020: Autumndale Therapies is open and accepting new clients for online and telephone counselling. Remote working means that my counselling service is unaffected by the latest restrictions in relation to Covid-19
Covid-19 response: Free emotional support sessions are also currently available:
These 20 minute sessions are not bookable but offered on a first come, first served basis. I warmly encourage you to make use of this service if you just need a friendly person to talk to for a little while ...
The world continues to feel like a rather strange place to be in, with frequent changes to accommodate and adjustments to be made.
There is so much grief and loss about - as well as death itself, there is loss of freedoms, loss of what is familiar, loss of an ability to plan ahead, loss of work, loss of happily anticipated events and loss of health. It feels propitious, if slightly odd, that helping people who have experienced bereavement, loss and trauma has been a major part of my work as a counsellor since its very beginning - and so I am well-placed to be doing this in the current circumstances.
And so, work here continues, although with a little more help from technology than before: landline and WhatsApp audio or video calls are being used for therapy sessions. Zoom meetings too. Unfortunately, face-to-face counselling (and reflexology) sessions are not possible here for a while yet - but remote working is working very well!
So do get in touch if you would like to make an appointment - email or landline is best - my contact details are on this page ...
I have worked with people experiencing all kinds of issues and specialist areas for me are helping those with:
•bereavement and loss
•low mood and depression
•attachment and relationship issues
•trauma and stress
•adverse childhood events
•highly sensitive personalities
•the pressures of illness or of being a carer
So, if you are feeling stressed or anxious all the time ... if you just can't seem to cope as well after the death of someone close to you ... if you are struggling to find motivation ... if you find relationships difficult ... if you seem to be stuck in a pattern of unhelpful behaviour ... if you are ill or look after someone else and just yearn to be heard as yourself rather than as the patient or the carer ... or if you find that events from the past are badly affecting your life now ... I invite you to get in touch to see if, through the therapeutic process, you can get to a place where your life feels more comfortable - a place you really want to be and where you will flourish and feel content
... I can't wave a magic wand but I can walk alongside you, work with you, support you and offer you insights and strategies. And I will give you my undivided attention - 'the most valuable thing you can do for another human being'
Ready to explore more about regular 1:1 therapy? Click here for more about my practice or use the menu above
I'm sure the events of 2020 have had a significant impact on your life ...
... this year may have felt extremely lonely and difficult to bear - full of challenges - but I sincerely hope that it hasn’t been overwhelming for you, even though it has been for many. Maybe isolation, health, relationship, child care, financial and/or employment issues seem especially difficult for you at the moment; or maybe you have quietly enjoyed the lockdown and feel anxious about re-engaging with the sort of life you led before
Perhaps you are a key worker and now need to process how the events of the last few months are affecting you; or perhaps you have been taking stock of your life and have decided that you need to do something differently in the future
Maybe you feel you need some help right now or simply that now feels the right time to begin to look for some support
Working collaboratively with you, I can help you begin to discover how to live your best life
If you would like to receive some more information on managing anxiety and maintaining health and wellbeing in general, as well as during the current situation, please email and I will send you a complimentary e-booklet.
There is a great version especially for children too, so let me know which you'd like to receive (check your junk mail box, if you don't see my reply in your inbox!)
If you need urgent help, especially outside of standard office hours, you can call the Samaritans free any time, from any phone on 116 123, from anywhere in the UK or the Republic of Ireland (or email [email protected])
Alternatively, text SHOUT to 85258 and you will be be put in touch with a trained crisis volunteer, who will chat to you via text
... whether you are feeling suicidal or simply need to talk to someone
Click here for further suggestions or check out the Useful Contacts page
... and now that you're ready to explore the idea of therapy a bit further, please read on:
Perhaps there's something on your mind - a worry or a sense of dissatisfaction? Some confusion or uncertainty? Maybe you are feeling low or anxious, overwhelmed or lonely? Sad - perhaps grieving? Or stuck in repetitive cycles of unhelpful behaviour ...
Sometimes it's easier to talk to someone independent of friends and family, no matter how well you get on - an experienced professional who will be objective and non-judgemental.
I will listen to anything you'd like to share, no matter how difficult, serious, sensitive or even trivial you're afraid it may sound.
A short, complimentary introductory session will allow you to talk to me before making any commitment and help us to decide if we would like to work together
~ this beautiful short film describes how helpful talking therapy can be ~
Email or landline is the quickest way to contact me initially, as mobile reception here is poor
(Please check your junk mail box, if you don't see my reply in your inbox!)
Once we have agreed to work together, landline and WhatsApp audio or video calls can be used for therapy sessions. Zoom meetings are also possible
I work with people aged 12yr and over - and I would welcome your enquiry, whoever you are and whatever your background.
Therapy for young people aged 12yr and over is sometimes offered in collaboration with The Family Counselling Trust in Hampshire. FCT work is short term, incorporating a systems-based approach in which family patterns of relating are explored. Changing these patterns, with therapeutic support, can often help young people and their families to thrive.
I have current (2020) enhanced DBS and level 3 'Safeguarding Children' certificates.
I saw my first counselling clients back in 2013 and I am experienced in working with a very wide variety of issues as well as having specialist training in working with trauma, bereavement issues and the use of creative arts in therapy.
I have worked as a counsellor with a social housing provider, a bereavement counselling charity, a carer's support group and a family counselling organisation. I have also cared for elderly relatives and have a good understanding of what it is like to live with those experiencing significant physical illness as well as dementia, addictions and other mental health conditions.
Before becoming a counsellor, I was a clinical physiologist in the NHS, specialising in cardiology. Along the way, I have worked as a primary school teaching assistant, an administrator in a hospice and also qualified as a reflexologist.
(And I have three grown-up children and two dogs!)
I use a humanistic and integrative approach and my personal philosophy is rooted in humanistic principles: I believe we have only one life and that we should each be able to have the personal responsibility and autonomy to live ethically and well, albeit within our own personal limitations - and to empathically support others to do the same.
My training has been a good fit with this philosophy and the overarching aim of my work is to empower clients and encourage their autonomy and agency in shaping their own lives, ultimately in ways that feel satisfactory to them ...
Person-Centred roots support me in approaching clients with sensitive understanding - as equals yet as unique individuals, who are essentially OK, self-determining and with an innate ability to change and grow, at any age and stage of life.
My broad-based early training, further studies and ongoing continuing professional development allow me to integrate other approaches and techniques, as appropriate.
As a humanistic and integrative counsellor, with my work underpinned by Person-Centred theory, we would work relationally with the issues you choose to bring - whatever matters most to you at the moment.
We would work together, to create a secure, warm and professional relationship in which you could feel able to explore your concerns, whilst being supported in your process of increasing self-awareness, personal growth and development. At times, this may feel like hard and challenging work and it does require a high level of commitment.
Regular reviews would help to ensure that the focus of our work remains relevant to your needs.
My physical practice is halfway between Petersfield and Liphook, on the Hampshire and West Sussex county border but, working online, we can meet from wherever you happen to be.
Click here or see below for further information about counselling and how it may help you ...
Counselling usually takes place weekly, over several weeks or longer, depending on individual requirements.
Regular sessions are the most beneficial, although a single session may occasionally prove helpful, especially when we have worked together before.
Sessions last for 50 min.
My entire career has been spent in the health and wellness sector: I was formerly a clinical physiologist, specialising in cardiology and have also been a complementary therapist for a number of years, with a particular interest in reflexology, essential oils and the benefits of far infra red sauna use.
Complementary therapy still forms a small but important part of my work and I am always delighted to meet new clients for complementary therapy, as well as for counselling.
A sense of wellbeing springs from the union of a well-balanced mind within a well-balanced body. Physical issues may affect mental health and vice versa. Emotions are felt and held in the body as well as in the mind, so I will be just as interested in exploring how you feel physically, as how you feel emotionally.
Clients who come for reflexology find the deep relaxation, often encouraged by the treatment, to be profoundly therapeutic. Foot reflexology has been shown to increase vagal tone and heart rate variability, as well as decreasing sympathetic activation and blood pressure. These parameters are key indicators of general health. See this abstract ... for more information.
Occasionally, people who come for counselling find that combining it with reflexology is helpful, for these reasons. For more information on this way of working, click here.
More specifically, I am able to use the reflexology lymphatic drainage (RLD) technique to support those with primary or secondary lymphoedema. This technique may also support those with autoimmune disorders and chronic fatigue syndrome.
Once here, parking is easy and my consulting and treatment room is comfortable and private.
Online or telephone counselling are also options.
Email or landline is the quickest way to contact me, as mobile reception here is poor (please check your junk mail box, if my reply to your email does not appear in your inbox)
Whatever has brought you to this page I am pleased to welcome you and hope that you have found something useful to take away.
Irish poet, author, priest and philosopher John O’Donohue wrote:
May I have the courage today
To live the life that I would love,
To postpone my dream no longer,
But do at last what I came here for
And waste my heart on fear no more.
These are powerful words. But it is often very difficult to find the courage to face and create change alone. This is when talking to someone may be helpful ...
In his poem, The Road Not Taken, Robert Frost wrote:
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I,
I took the one less travelled by,
And that has made all the difference.
There is always a choice.
Maybe now is the right time for you to choose to speak and to be really heard; maybe you would like to have someone alongside you on your journey ... As Oprah Winfrey said, in her inspiring acceptance speech for the Cecil B DeMille Lifetime Achievement Award at the Golden Globes in 2018, 'Speaking your truth is the most powerful tool ...' It has the power to create change, in you and in others too.
If you are looking for a counsellor near to Petersfield, Liphook or Midhurst, do get in touch - my contact details are at the top of every page of this website and you can email me directly and in complete confidence.
You might also like to visit the Counselling Directory, the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) or the Hampshire Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (HACP) websites to search for therapists.
And your GP may be able to help too ...
A further option is to call helplines like The Samaritans (for anyone) or The Silver Line (for older people). Or text to 85258, to reach Shout, a crisis text line. As mentioned above, these helplines are open 24 hours a day, every day.
Whatever you're going through, you can call the Samaritans free any time, from any phone on 116 123 (from anywhere in the UK or the Republic of Ireland).
If you need a response immediately, it's best to phone.
The Samaritans is a registered charity, which provides a confidential, off the record listening service, 24/7. Their aim is to offer support to anyone in emotional distress, struggling to cope or at risk of suicide. Contact them by following this link: Samaritans
You can email, write or visit a local branch, if you prefer. The nearest branch to Petersfield is in Portsmouth at 296 London Rd, PO2 9JN. Phone: 023 9269 1313
Visit the Samaritans for more information and alternative ways to make contact.
You can reach The Silver Line, especially for older people, on 0800 470 8090. Listen to CEO of The Silver Line, Sophie Andrews' compelling and informative TED talk here or visit their website here.
Shout is the UK's first 24/7 text service, free on all major mobile networks, for anyone in crisis anytime, anywhere. It’s a place to go if you’re struggling to cope and you need immediate help. For support in a crisis, text Shout to 85258
HOPELineUK is for young people under the age of 35 who may be having thoughts about taking their own life and anyone who is concerned that a young person may be having thoughts of taking their own life. Contact them on 0800 068 41 41, text to 07786209697 or email [email protected] They are open 10am to 10pm on weekdays and 2pm to 10pm on weekends and bank holidays.
Counselling - sometimes it's just good to talk ...
As a counsellor, I work on 1:1 with adults and young people, aged 12 and over, either face-to-face or online/by phone.
The sorts of issues that counselling may help with include:
- Stress, inc. work, parenting or caring-related
- Low self-esteem
- Bereavement, loss and change
- Coping with illness
- Self harm
- Suicidal thoughts
In counselling jargon, I use a humanistic and integrative approach, sometimes incorporating creative, Mindful and CBT-based interventions if appropriate - but only if these ways of working appeal and seem relevant.
In plain language, counselling can provide you with an opportunity for self-exploration and examination of troubling issues and feelings in a confidential, non-judgmental and honest yet empathic environment.
My counselling framework is underpinned by Person Centred theory so my work is client-led and non-directive; in other words, we would work on the concerns that you bring and I would not tell you what to think or do; rather, I would encourage you to discover your own ways to achieve greater contentment.
The human brain is extraordinarily malleable and change is possible at any time of life. My aim is always to empower clients to bring about the changes that seem important for them, through my listening and enquiring skills as well as the power of a strong therapeutic relationship - something that is key to the success of any therapeutic encounter, whether in counselling or in complementary or conventional medicine. Carl Jung, the father of analytical psychology, said that:
People new to counselling are often mystified as to how it might work for them. There is much evidence to suggest that it is the quality of the relationship between therapist and client, whatever their modality (e.g. integrative, Person-Centred, Psychodynamic, CBT), that is the key to a successful outcome in the eyes of the client:
The idea is that a person can begin to see how their mind works in the unique relationship with the therapist, a relationship that is purposefully structured to make the person's psychology more apparent and a topic of exploration. Noticing, exploring and working through these emotional experiences in relationship with the therapist is a powerful mechanism of growth in therapy.
People who get the most out of therapy are those who are:
- willing to try to discern within themselves their feelings and reactions in talking with their therapist
- willing to share and explore those feelings and reactions with their therapist
Exploring these responses in the immediacy of the relationship with the therapist is considered a powerful mediator of change in therapy.
(The above is quoted from this paper: Self-Awareness, Transference & Counter-Transference by Michael E. Makekau, University of Hawaii - and is equally applicable to all counselling and psychotherapeutic approaches.)
As a practicing counsellor, I am an accredited member of the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP).
I am a member of The Association of Reflexologists (AoR). As such, I work according to a strict code of practice and ethics requiring the highest level of professionalism and giving client well being the highest priority.
Please get in touch if you are interested in either counselling or complementary therapy.
Autumndale Therapies provides:
- Short, free of charge 'meet the therapist' sessions for prospective clients
- Integrated counselling and reflexology sessions
- Reflexology Lymphatic Drainage
- Vertical Reflex Therapy (visit this other page for more information on VRT)
- Essential oil products to support and enhance reflexology treatments
- Essential oil products, tailored to individual needs, for use at home
- Reflexology taster sessions
- Foot/ hand massage
- Sauna suite with private shower and space to relax
- Dedicated and comfortable ground floor treatment room (1 step to enter)
- Bathroom, with level access
- Tranquil, discrete location, convenient from West Sussex, Surrey or East Hampshire,
including Petersfield, Liss, Liphook, Haslemere and Midhurst and Waterlooville
- On-site parking
- Vouchers for complementary therapies
As a counsellor, I use a humanistic and integrative approach.
Humanistic psychology has been called the 'Third Way' in relation to psychotherapeutic work because it does not focus on past events and unconscious processes, as in psychoanalysis or psychodynamic therapy; or on how thoughts might influence behaviour, as in CBT - cognitive-behavioural therapy; it focuses on the unique experience of each individual and is underpinned by the belief that everybody, no matter what their circumstances or stage in life, has an innate tendency towards growth and development.
Carl Rogers was a well-known figure in the field of humanistic psychology and developed the Person-Centred approach, which underpins my way of working.
Carl Jung also focused on the uniqueness of the individual; he believed, among many other things, that crisis and breakdown were essential precursors to transformation and healing. His sense of the need for the individual to achieve 'wholeness' for their wellbeing sits comfortably with the view - my view - of the holistic nature of complementary therapies, such as reflexology. I believe that counselling too, should be holistic.
The humanistic counsellor aims to support clients along their personal development journey by offering a safe, non-judgemental relationship where they may explore any issues - thoughts, feelings, circumstances - that are of concern to them.
Humanistic counsellors are generally non-directive and client-led, encouraging autonomy and personal choice.
My integrative training allows me to utilise aspects of other approaches where appropriate and if they appeal to you - and of course if it seems that they may benefit the therapeutic process and do no harm.
If you think you might like to make an exploratory appointment, please get in touch.
My practice is easily accessible, whilst being tucked away in a peaceful corner of the South Downs National Park, in a small village near Liss. It is less than 4 miles from Petersfield and Liphook. It is also within easy reach of Farnham, Guildford and Haslemere in Surrey, Midhurst, Fernhurst and Chichester in West Sussex and Portsmouth, Bordon and Alton in East Hampshire.