Click on each of the below questions to expand each and read more information.
I hope that my website has given you an overview of who I am and how I work and if you are interested in finding out more I would recommend an initial consultation to meet each other to see if it feels right for you when we are in the room together. We will probably be able to establish quite early on if I am the right person for you.
Choosing a therapist is a very individual choice and I recommend you take the time to meet at least a couple people with a view to having some thought about who you may work best with. I believe that each relationship is individual and unique and it is a privilege for me to get to know people I see and to support them on their therapeutic journey. Relationship is central to building a therapeutic alliance and working together, so trust your instinct to make a decision and start your own journey.
I look forward to meeting you!
The terms ‘Psychotherapy’ and ‘Counselling’ are often used interchangeably and essentially they are both characterised by a form of “talking therapy”. You will see many practitioners will use both terms when referring to themselves.
Fundamentally both psychotherapy and counselling have the same goal of providing relief to someone with some sort of psychological symptom or obstacles although there are some subtle differences.
‘Counselling’ is often used to describe a shorter-term process than psychotherapy. A goal in counselling is to enable someone to make better use of resources they may already have in place. Counselling often focuses on a specific issue, life event or experience or on a particular symptom.
‘Psychotherapy’ is often a longer process of treatment and focuses on facilitating the exploration and development of new resources for a person. In psychotherapy you will have the chance to look deeper into the root of your issues. You will have the chance to explore patterns of behaviour, thinking and feeling in your life at a greater depth that allow you to focus more on your way of being in the world.
Psychotherapy training is also a more rigorous and academic process.
Psychotherapy and counselling help you gain a better understanding of yourself. Many people will benefit from therapy at some point in their life and they may have sought a therapist to help them with any range of intrusive thoughts, undesirable behaviours, psychological barriers or overwhelming fears and anxieties.
These days society is increasingly open-minded about the benefits of therapy and how it can help us achieve our potential. Gone are the days when we had to have “a problem” in order to seek help. People nowadays are more self-aware and have options and opportunities to look at their own potential stalling blocks and to do something about them. At any point those stalling blocks start to intrude on who we are and who we want to be in the world, we may seek therapy to help us overcome those issues. Counselling and psychotherapy can help provide you with the necessary tools and resources to work with what you have and where you want to go.
The chance to have someone entirely focused on what is going on for you on a regular and ongoing basis is an amazing opportunity that can significantly change your outlook and radicalise your way of being, with yourself and with others. Sharing your thoughts and feelings with a professional can provide you with the right formula to ease psychological symptoms and maladaptive ways of being that a friendship simply isn’t able to do.
Counselling and psychotherapy can help you find a more appropriate way through that serves you better personally and enables you to build better and healthier relationships with yourself and with others.
There isn’t a simple answer to this question!
How long people choose to stay in therapy can vary hugely and it is down to personal choice and what is going to work for you at this point in your life.
For financial reasons you may want to work with a certain number of sessions in mind or it may be that you want to be able to continue as necessary on a rolling basis. It largely depends on the work you feel up to doing and the potential variety of issues you may want to bring to therapy.
The length of time in therapy is not indicative of the degree of difficulty you may be experiencing either. Issues having a more substantial impact on your life may not necessarily take longer to work through and perceived smaller issues may not be worked through in a shorter number of sessions. For some people short-term work lasting a few months that is focused on a single issue is plenty, while others will gain great benefit from working for much longer periods of a year or several years. Those who have been experiencing difficulties for many years often appreciate and benefit from a longer-term approach.
We can use the initial sessions as a way to expand on what you bring to the assessment session and to explore anything else that comes up in our initial discussions. For this reason I would advise a minimum of 6 sessions. We can discuss what works for you in the assessment session and this can also be reviewed at regular points throughout the counselling work where necessary.
Ultimately it is your therapy and needs to work for you!
Your session will run from your allocated time for 50 mins. If you arrive 20 minutes late then we will only be able to have a 30 minute session. I’m afraid I am unable to extend session times and you will still be charged for a full session. It may always still be worth attending your session though and I welcome any chance to safely text me to let me know if you are running late so that I know when to expect you.
Payment is due each session and I accept cash or BACS transfers. Any missed sessions with less than 48 hours notice will be payable on the following session.
If you want to work longer term I am also happy to work on monthly payments.
Each session lasts 50 minutes unless otherwise discussed and changed by mutual agreement. This is considered a “therapeutic hour”.
There is no barrier at all to who psychotherapy can help!
No matter your upbringing, race, culture, religion or belief system, at some point in your life, you may seek to change something in your life or feel you’ve got a bit stuck and need a bit of help and insight from someone else. A therapist can offer safe, non-judgemental support in times of need, and also in times when you’re looking to fulfil potential and improve on your lot in life, rather than focus on a particular troubling issue.
Therapy sessions will usually be scheduled weekly and your time slot will be held for you for the agreed time period.
A weekly format facilitates continuity and a steady routine and with this, progress is charted to offer optimal results for you. Having a session each week also allows you sufficient time to process what goes on for you from week to week. It offers a familiar spot in the week to decompress, explore issues and work on the changes you may want to put into place during your week between sessions.
You may wish to have more than 1 weekly session and this can also be agreed during initial assessment or during your therapy.
On rare occasions fortnightly sessions may be possible.
Depending on the nature of what may be going on, it may be more appropriate for us to have a chance to talk things through together face to face in your next session.
If there is anything related to administrative issues I will always pick up email and will be able to access telephone messages too.
When I am with clients I will have my phone off so unscheduled contact may be unlikely and so in any case of emergency or 24/7 support I would also advise having the Samaritans number to hand – 116 123, or if necessary, emergency services.
Not at all. If you would like to come to therapy, you are welcome to self-refer and you are welcome to get in touch.
Counselling is often difficult and talking about issues you may not have spoken out loud to anyone before may be a really challenging prospect. Sessions may also get harder before it gets easier.
If you have in mind what it is you like and don’t like and how that feels for you, talk it through with your therapist. Like any relationship, some work and some don’t. Your sessions are for you and it’s useful to bear in mind that any feedback will be grist for the mill and can be used in sessions. Your therapist won’t be offended by you being clear about what works for you and what doesn’t, in fact they’ll embrace it!
If you don’t feel you’re connecting with your therapist, talk it through and if it still feels the same you may want to meet others and see if you have a different experience with someone else.
Therapy can be challenging both emotionally in sessions and in between sessions when you are processing what has gone on. It may also feel like a more uncomfortable place before it starts to feel more positive for you. Be assured though that a primary concern of your therapist is to ensure you can get the right support you need at this particular point in your life.
Following our initial assessment, if you would like to start sessions together we will agree a day and time for your sessions. I will send you a standard therapy agreement that outlines my commitment to you and it details much of what I would have discussed in the assessment session. This includes details of my professional commitments and of the administrative aspects of our therapeutic relationship. We will both have a signed copy of this agreement.