Natural Health Clinic
98 Cathedral Road
I'm interested in how you 'do your life', and how that is working out for you. What does it mean for you to be you? I'm interested in your exploration of the parts of you that may feel out of reach, un-noticed, or uncared for, difficult or challenging.
In order to change you need to open yourself to your inner experience: noticing the changing physical and emotional sensations in your body and talking about them means you are less likely to be overwhelmed by them.
The challenge of therapy is to take ownership of your body and mind - of yourself; so that you are freer to know what you know and to feel what you feel. For many this challenge involves finding a way to become calm and focused, finding a way to be more fully alive in the here and now, and engaged with the people around you, and not keeping secrets from yourself, including secrets about the way you have managed to survive.
In order to regain control over your self, it is important to stay with your difficulties - and confront what has caused you distress - once you feel safe, and aware of what triggers you into hypa-arousal (frantic) or hypo-arousal (freeze) modes. The key to wellbeing is knowing how to find ways to stay online and face difficulties that led to distress without shutting down - panicking, flying into rages, becoming numb, being reactive, going rigid, going into collapse or going offline in some way. When people are hyperaroused or shut down, they can't learn from their experience. But stepping into self-witnessing can be a powerful way of transforming distress.
If we access our emotional brain, instead of shutting down or being reactive, then we can do the work of repairing and restoring our emotional centre; and we do this work through self-awareness - by noticing what is going on inside us, and in so doing, allowing us to feel our feelings, and paying attention to our inner ecology. We can change the way we feel by becoming aware of our inner experience and learning to emotionally regulate what is happening inside ourselves.
People in distress often live with seemingly unbearable sensations: feeling heartbroken, suffering from intolerable sensations in the pit of their stomach, or tightness in their chest. But avoiding feeling these sensations in our bodies increases our vulnerability to being overwhelmed by them. When we pay focussed attention to our bodily sensations, we can notice how our feelings shift and change, and with that, increase our control over them.
You may struggle with losing your ground, or giving your power away to others and losing sight of yourself. I work with clients who are in some form of distress: from sadness, anger, hurt, fear and anxiety. By coming into contact with our inner selves, we can enter into the flow of life again. As mindfulness based therapist Daniel J Siegel states: 'you do not need to be a prisoner of the past. You can make sense of your life and free yourself from the early adaptations that helped you to survive but that are now in need of updating. Now you can thrive, not just survive. You can take off that winter coat of defensive adaptation and free yourself to live fully in the present and create your own future. This is how you can connect to yourself, from the inside out.'
Rather than pushing uncomfortable feelings away, I help clients to stay with these emotions so that they can come to a new understanding of themselves. I believe that the way to transform how we relate to ourselves is through self-acceptance, which includes accepting difficulty and pain, in order to move through these difficulties. I gently invite clients to stay with their distress and speak from those places inside them that need focus and attention. While this work can be very challenging, I think staying with difficult emotions is also liberating and can lead to greater depth of insight and clarity of thought. I also believe accepting emotions and staying with them, can bring a great deal of relief, and paradoxically, hope.
Many approach therapy with me because they are in pain of one kind or another: problems occur when our internal signals don't work, when our maps don't lead us where we need to go, when we are too paralyzed to move, when our actions do not correspond to our needs, or when our relationships break down (based on research by Bessel Van Der Kolk, 2014, expert on traumatic stress).
By acknowledging difficulties and internal messages that we may have been carrying since childhood, which may have impacted our worth and self-esteem, we can then start to feel some space and freedom from those messages as we can work towards changing the messages that we believe about ourselves. This can involve working through core issues around childhood, relationship with care-givers in order to step outside of ourselves and witness how it was to be a young child, taking on board various messages. This work can release us from the views that we took on board back then, and may still be subconsciously living by today, in a limiting way. Considering new ways of being ourselves can take us out of our comfort zone and yet feel increasingly right for us now.
I am qualified as a humanistic counsellor, which works with the understanding that people want the best for themselves, and in essence want a fulfilled life. As a humanistic therapist, I help clients to get in touch with their inner selves, their authentic voice, which intuitively knows where they may be feeling stuck and how to be more themselves and engage with life in a way that works.
I am currently following a masters in 'core process' psychotherapy at Karuna Institute - 'Karuna' means compassionate. One meaning of 'core process' is depth work, because it concerns looking at our core concerns, or deep wounding, from trauma or difficult experiences in the past, or a sense of feeling numb or lost in some way. This psychotherapeutic approach integrates western Buddhist mindfulness techniques with psychotherapeutic techniques. It includes helping a client speak from their feelings rather than about their feelings. It also helps a client stay with their emotions in the here-and-now, how they are feeling, and where they are feeling. This can help a client to retrieve parts of them that they may have split from: the anger, sadness, or even the joyful part of themselves. It asks of a client: where have you put those parts of yourself? Part of the therapeutic journey is to own the parts of ourselves that we may be projecting on to others, or acting out from, or even denying feeling at all.
With 20 years' experience in teaching adults in a wide variety of settings, I have been counselling for 5 years as my own therapeutic journey has deepened and taken on a more central part in my life.
It's really important that you feel comfortable with a therapist you choose - the work is a collaborative process focussed on an exploration of yourself: to find out why you do what you do and think what you think. If you would like to contact me, I would suggest we meet for an initial fee of £20 for one hour, so that you can see if you would like to work with me as a therapist. Then, we would meet weekly at £40 an hour.
Tel: 07533 496568 / 02920 192157 email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Training, qualifications & experience
2016-2020 - MA in Mindfulness Based Core Process Psychotherapy
2015: MBACP - Member of British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy
2011-2015 - Foundation Degree in Humanistic Existentialist Counselling - Vale and Glamorgan College
2015: Private Practice, Natural Health Clinic
2013: Counsellor - Mind
2011: Counsellor - Cruse Bereavement
Areas of counselling I deal with
- Affairs and betrayals
- Anger management
- Anorexia nervosa
- Antisocial personality disorder
- Asperger's syndrome
- Avoidant personality disorder
- Binge-eating disorder
- Bipolar disorder/Manic depression
- Body dysmorphic disorder
- Borderline personality disorder
- Bulimia nervosa
- Carer support
- Chronic fatigue syndrome/ME
- Dependent personality disorder
- Domestic violence
- Drug abuse
- Eating disorders
- Emotional abuse
- Family issues
- Gender dysphoria
- Generalised anxiety disorder
- Histrionic personality disorder
- Internet addiction
- Learning difficulties
- Low self-confidence
- Low self-esteem
- Narcissistic personality disorder
- Obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD)
- Obsessive-compulsive personality disorder
- Panic disorder
- Paranoid personality disorder
- Passive aggressive behaviour
- Personality disorders
- Physical abuse
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- Postnatal depression
- Relationship issues
- Schizoid personality disorder
- Schizotypal personality disorder
- Seasonal affective disorder (SAD)
- Separation and divorce
- Sex addiction
- Sex problems
- Sexual abuse
- Suicidal thoughts
- Work-related stress
£40 for a 60 minute session.
The first session will be at a reduced rate of £20, to see what therapy with me would be like, and to go through a contract and assessment. This is because it is really important that you feel comfortable with the therapist that you work with.
'We can hardly bear to look. The shadow may carry the best of the life we have not lived. Go into the basement, the attic, the refuse bin. Find gold there. Find an animal who has not been fed or watered. It is you ! This neglected, exiled animal, hungry for attention, is a part of your self.' - Marion Woodman
'The project of psychotherapy is to support us in retrieving lost pieces of ourselves. It welcomes us back into our emotional bodies, helping us experience our connectedness to self and other humans.' - Nick Totton ('Wild Therapy')
'Anguish maintains its power only as long as we allow it to intimidate us. If we try to avoid a powerful wave looming above us on the beach, it will send us crashing into the sand and surf. But if we face it head-on and dive right into it, we discover only water.' - Stephen Batchelor ('Buddhism Without Beliefs')
'Practice is not about changing what we do so much as being very observant and experiencing what's going on with us. Awareness is our true self; it's what we are. So we don't have to try to develop awareness; we simply need to notice how we block awareness with our thoughts, our fantasies, our opinions, and our judgments. We're either in awareness, which is our natural state, or we're doing something else. The mark of mature students is that most of the time, they don't do something else. They're just here, living their life. Nothing special.' - Charlotte Joko Beck ('Nothing Special. Living Zen')
'If we touch the truth of suffering with our mindfulness, we will be able to recognize and identify our specific suffering, its specific causes, and the way to remove those causes and end our suffering.' - Thich Nhat Hanh
Maps & Directions
Type of session
|Face to face counselling:||Yes|
Monday and Wednesday evenings Tuesday mornings
Types of client