How many times have you turned to someone with a problem and they've said 'What you should do is....' or 'Well, you just shouldn't let that bother you' or 'Oh yes, that happened to me - let me tell you about that'? Or you say you're depressed and they reply 'Isn't everyone?' or 'What have you got to be depressed about?' or even worse 'Well just cheer up!' Wow, if only you'd thought of that. If only it were that simple.
The difference is that I'll actually listen to you. I won't give you the answers, but I will help you find the answers for yourself. I won't make it about me or tell you that you're a horrible person for feeling the way you do. I'll help you find a way to feel the way you wish you felt, not how other people think you should feel.
I provide a safe, non-judgemental and entirely confidential environment in which I can support you to work through whatever's bothering you, whether it's major trauma or something that others might think is trivial, but which is a big issue for you. That's all counselling is - someone who listens, and then says things that are actually helpful.
You can come for a weekly, fortnightly or monthly session to suit your needs and budget.
my style of counselling
I use Emotional Therapeutic Counselling (ETC), a particular counselling modality that works with emotions rather than thoughts. It's client led, which means that you the client are in control of what is discussed, in what depth, and what progress is made through the therapy. More importantly, I don't put you through a process or try to turn you into a pre-defined version of 'normal'. What's important is what's right for you, not what you or anyone else thinks you 'should' or 'could' do.
It's usually long-term and seeks to identify, and resolve, the deeper emotional factors behind issues such as depression, anxiety, lack of self-confidence or self-harm. This is not for people looking for a quick fix or who want to be told the answers to their problems.
who this style is suitable for
If any of the following statements sound familiar, you may find Emotional Therapeutic Counselling of use:
Is something on your mind and you don't know what to do about it?
Do you feel useless or worthless?
Do you worry a lot of the time, get anxious, or feel you want to harm yourself?
Do you feel frustrated and stuck in the same old pattern?
Are you tired of trying to talk to friends and family who just don't 'get it'?
Since this type of counselling seeks to work with emotions rather than the mind, it's not suitable for people with diagnosed psychotic mental illnesses, e.g. schizophrenia, nor people who are actively using alcohol or non-prescription drugs as a coping mechanism.
how what I do is different
Whilst ETC is a talking therapy, it also uses various tools to help a person recognise, acknowledge and deal with repressed or suppressed emotional blocks. Emotional Therapeutic counsellors believe that the mind, body and spirit are of equal importance, and that our emotional wellbeing is the key to a contented, fulfilling life.
Many clients have heard of - or may have tried - CBT (Cognitive Behavioural Therapy) which as provided by the NHS, offers coping strategies to enable the client to function in day to day life despite their issues. It can be compared to taking paracetamol for stomach-ache. That reduces the pain and allows you to function, but doesn't actually cure the cause of your pain which could be, for example, appendicitis. ETC can be compared to having your appendix removed - it's much harder and more uncomfortable than taking paracetamol, but means the pain goes away for good.
CBT is also a powerful therapy in its own right, and I use techniques from that modality when I feel it will help you.
As I'm also a physical therapist, I can use Bowen therapy to help with the physical symptoms of your emotional unease - things like headaches, sleep problems, tight neck and shoulders, digestive upset and breathing issues. Those symptoms will go away as your emotional state improves, but why wait for that?
Counselling is recognised by the NHS as beneficial for a variety of mental health issues.