How Might Counselling Help You?
Sometimes, just being able to talk to someone in confidence about your problems, anxieties, relationships or other difficulties may be incredibly helpful. You may gain fresh insights, grow in self-awareness or feel less distressed. Counsellors spend a long time in training, so that we are able to listen effectively and respond appropriately to others. I can offer you a respectful, honest and empathic space in which to explore any issue that is of concern to you at the moment.
What sort of issues would you like to explore?
Here are some examples of the kinds of issues that clients bring to counselling - it's not an exhaustive list!
- Stress, which could include from work, parenting or caring for a relative or friend
- Low self-esteem
- Bereavement, loss and change
- Coping with illness
- Self harm
- Suicidal thoughts
Deciding If I'm The Right Counsellor For You ...
In order to establish an effective working relationship, it is important that we feel comfortable with one another. Therefore, if you think that you might like to see me for counselling, we can arrange a short initial meeting in which to decide if we feel we would like to work together. This will give you the opportunity to see the counselling environment and ask any questions that you may have about me, the counselling process or practical aspects such as duration and payment.
There is no charge for this first meeting.
My Background As a Counsellor
I came to counselling through my desire to be able to provide better support to my reflexology clients. I now work as a counsellor and a complementary therapist.
As well as seeing clients privately, I work as a counsellor in a voluntary capacity for two local organisations – The Bereavement Counselling Charity and The Princess Royal Trust for Carers . I also worked with the counselling service at Radian (a social housing provider), until its' closure in 2016. As well as working with adults of any age, I am qualified to work with young people over the age of 12 years.
I have completed an Advanced Professional Diploma in Therapeutic Counselling and have a first class BA (Hons) in Humanistic and Integrative Counselling. I also have a post-graduate diploma in Contemporary Trauma Practice and undertake some form of further training every year.
I am a registered member of the BACP (British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy) and work according to their Code of Ethics and Practice – which includes having regular supervision sessions.
Supervision is with a highly experienced counsellor and enables counsellors to review the work that they are doing, to gain support, guidance and further knowledge - and to check that they are working competently. Client confidentiality is maintained during supervision.
I also belong to the HACP (the Hampshire Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy).
I have enhanced DBS (Disclosure and Barring Service) clearance for each organisation with whom I work.
How I Work
The Humanistic and Integrative approach that I use is underpinned by Person-Centred theory and an understanding of human development and existential thought; but it may also draw on my knowledge of Gestalt theory, Transactional Analysis and analytical psychology. In addition, I sometimes make use of CBT (cognitive behavioural therapy), Mindfulness and creative techniques . I make use of whatever seems applicable for each individual - everyone is unique and prefers to work in a different way.
I work with whatever the client brings to each session - I don't have my own agenda. I may sometimes suggest a different way of working, for example, to use a creative technique such as sand tray work or pen and paper, alongside the therapeutic dialogue - but the choice is always with the client.
My role is not to give advice or tell you what to do; rather it is to facilitate your autonomy so that you are able to choose to make changes in your own life, which may ultimately lead to greater happiness and contentment.
My aim is to support each client towards personal growth and development through the creation of a sound relationship based on respect, honesty and empathy.
Counselling takes place via weekly, 50min. long, face-to-face sessions in my consulting room in Rake. We would contract at the beginning to work either for a fixed number of sessions or to work in an open-ended way but with regular reviews to assess how we feel the work is going.
Integrating Reflexology and Counselling
Recent developments in neuroscience provide evidence that body and mind form an inseparable unity. This is the holistic view and can no longer be ignored - see The Chiron Association for Body Psychotherapy for more on this subject.
Believing in an holistic approach, I therefore offer integrated reflexology and counselling sessions. This way of working typically comprises weekly sessions that include 30 minutes of reflexology followed by 50 minutes of counselling, although there is flexibility around the frequency of the reflexology and where in the session it takes place, as well as how the time is apportioned.
Reflexology is known to offer relief from tension and anxiety and is conducive to improved mood and relaxation. Stress, anxiety and other psychological issues frequently manifest as physical symptoms, which relaxation may help to ease.
Thus, using reflexology with counselling may benefit the overall process. A sound professional relationship is particularly important in this kind of 1:1 work.
Some more commonly used creative counselling approaches such as art, drama and movement seem to support the process of change and development in therapy - and I believe that this also applies to the appropriate use of reflexology.