Counselling is something that most people have heard of or you might have been to see a counsellor before. Every counsellor will practice in a slightly different way, because everyone is different, so it might be helpful for you to know how counselling works with me.
What is counselling?
It is, on a very basic level, an opportunity for you to be able to talk about anything you want to talk about. It’s a place where you can be open, be honest and, be heard and have someone really work to understand what’s going on for, as much as anyone can. It’s not a place where you will be given advice or be judged for anything you say. For those reasons, and more, the process and experience of counselling and seeing a counsellor is completely unique from anything out there, be that other relationships and/or other therapies.
How can counselling help me?
Have a think about these questions.
-Do you have anywhere in your life where it is just about you?
-Do you have anywhere where you don’t have to protect people when you say things?
-Do you have anywhere where you can truly be however you want to be and feel as you want to and do feel?
-Do you have anywhere where someone is there for you and only you and wants to understand what’s going on for you as closely as they can?
Counselling is all that, and more. Very rarely is anyone able to answer ‘yes’ to any of those questions, and yet those are things we all need. Having somewhere and someone away from your life, away from people you know, away from the situation, where you can share and be whoever you want to be, where my whole purpose in there is to accompany you and be there with you, is a hugely invaluable experience. It can be a relief to be able to let things out, it can feel freer to not have to worry that someone is going to pressure you, it can feel safe to know that you don’t have to protect that person from how you feel and, so many other things.
That means that you can talk about things you may not normally talk about, but may want to, or need to.
What type of counselling do you offer?
There are different types of counselling so it might be important for you to know about what type of counsellor I am, and what that actually means.
I am a psychotherapeutic counsellor, and I work integratively.
In simple terms that means that I use a variety of different approaches and theories in my learning and they feed into the way I work in the therapy room. As an integrative therapist, I integrate different models, modalities and theories in a way that works for me. Each therapist will be different and have a different interpretation and way of working within that. All the work I do is underpinned by the person centred way of working.
All that said, I am a firm believer that it is not the type of therapy that matters, but the relationship between therapist and client, between you and I. My belief is that if our relationship is strong, if you feel comfortable and safe with me, if you feel able to open up and share about anything you want to, if we connect as human beings, then therapy will have a better outcome for you. Therefore, my focus is about creating an environment for that allows us to work in a way that gives you that.
Who can come to counselling?
As a counsellor, I would see anyone who wanted to come. So that might be people who
~Have experienced a bereavement
~Are experiencing or have experienced anxiety
~Have been diagnosed with any kind of ill health
~Have mental health difficulties (of any nature), diagnosed or undiagnosed
~Use coping strategies that you don’t want to use anymore (such as self harm, alcohol, drugs, eating, gambling)
~Have been in, or are in, an abusive relationship or situation
~Were abused as a child (emotional, physical, sexual, or neglect)
~Are having work difficulties
~Have experienced a relationship breakdown or relationship difficulties
~Are having difficulties with dealing with something that is going on at the moment
~Are struggling to deal with something that has gone on in the past
~Have issues around something that may or will happen in the future (including death, dying and old age)
~Want to change your life in some way
~Want something specific or something different, for your future
~Want to change something about yourself
~Want to learn more about yourself
Quite simply, anyone can come to counselling. You could be someone who is feeling really good, or someone who is in complete despair, and you could come to counselling with either of those experiences, and all that is in between. Counselling is for anyone who wants to develop personally, learn more about themselves, process something, deal with something, have a place just for them, or even for someone who doesn’t know why they are there, they just feel they want to be.
How long to people come to counselling for?
That varies greatly. People can be in counselling for years, whereas other people come for 4-6 weeks. This is something that you would be in control of, but that we would talk about to make sure that you were getting what you needed.
Are you just going to ask me how I feel?
One of the misconceptions about counselling is that I will sit there and go ‘how do you feel about that?’. Yes, sometimes I might ask that, and counselling can certainly be about emotions, but we also look at events, and make links, and explore how you feel, and look to understand as much as possible so, asking how you feel, is only one of the things I will do.
If you have anymore questions, or would like to meet for an initial consultation, then please feel free to contact me.