Michael Forrest MBACP Reg and Accred Counselling and Psychotherapy
Lam Rim Bristol Buddhist Centre
12 Victoria Place
24 Regent Street
My approach is very much about incorporating the body because a lot of emotions, memories, life statements, thoughts and beliefs leave energetic imprints in our bodies. Many individuals find that embodied psychotherapy is therefore more successful than previous talking therapies, which may have helped to a degree, but were not able to fully address or resolve their deep-rooted, self-defeating patterns.
Through sensitively attuning to you, I support you with acceptance and a non-judgemental attitude to be with whatever emerges in the present moment. Using my presence as an anchor, I guide you deeper into awareness – awareness of your thoughts, feelings, emotions, needs, sensations, intuition and the sensed meaning of what you find there. I support you to develop more clarity, inner strength, groundedness and resilience.
What underpins the basis of my work is a person-centred approach. What this means in practice is that I follow your process and respect your automony to choose in each moment what is right for you. I respond in a way that honours and trusts your inate ability to know (at the deepest level) what supports your healing. If you have lost connection with this place, or don't trust yourself at this level, then part of our work may involve exploring what obscures this natural ability.
I work in an integrated way, drawing upon a number of well-known and proven approaches which gives me the flexibility to adapting my approach and pace to your individuals needs and support you on your unique journey.
I offer short and longer term work. In shorter-term work we may agree a certain number of sessions and focus on a specific concern. In longer-term work we may decide to work open-ended, exploring underlying or deeper-rooted issues.
I specialise in working with Trauma.
Since I was a child I have always had an enquiring nature and been curious about the deeper truth, mystery and meaning of life. This, coupled with trauma and depth suffering in my early years, has taken me on a profound journey that continues to unfold to this day.
In my late teens and early twenties, I travelled the world extensively, exploring many different cultures and peoples. During this period, whilst in Thailand, I discovered 'Insight Meditation' and went on to ordain as a Theravada Buddhist monk of the Thai Forest tradition in 1988. This became my foundation for the way ahead and what followed over the years, was an on-going intutitive opening, to exploring various approches to support my own healing and growth. This has included Core Process Psychotherapy, Nonviolent Communication, Focusing, Somatic Experiencing, breath work, embodied movement and dance.
I have immense gratitude for having been able to work, at a depth level, over a number of years with pioneers and reknowned teachers in the area of process, trauma and communication.
I am honoured to be able to support individuals with whatever they may bring (whether that be their distress and suffering or seeking new ways to fulfil their potential) and to help them navigate into new ways of being. Whoever it is I am working with, I enjoy helping them unlock and unblock those stuck places that prevent them from living with more ease or more fully emboding their dreams.
Training, qualifications & experience
I am a qualified Humanistic and Integrative Counsellor and Psychotherapist, registered and accredited with BACP (British Association for Counselling & Psychotherapy). I have been in practice since 2005.
I have previously worked as a NHS Psychotherapist for the Devon Partnership Trust, as well as a Bereavement Counsellor for Rowcroft Hospice.
I certified as an trainer in NVC (Nonviolent Communication) in 2005.
I have previously worked for 12 years for Torbay Social Services, Emergency Duty Team providing mediation and crisis support for children and families in need, as well as supporting individuals with mental health issues.
I have 28 years experience in Mindfulness Practice and have co-facilitated Mindfulness courses for the Devon Recovery Learning Community (DRLC).
I also co-founded a not-for-profit organisation, which supported a group of 30 counsellors in Eastern Sri Lanka following the Tsunami of 2004 and I was part of the teaching team facilitating Trauma Skills. As part of this project in Sri Lanka, I helped bring together leading figures from Buddhist, Muslim, Hindu and Sikh communities to support them in building trust and reconcilliation.
Proven models I draw upon:
Core Process Psychotherapy (developed by Maura and Franklyn Sills)
Person-Centered Counselling (developed by Carl Rogers)
Nonviolent Communication (developed by Dr Marshall Rosenberg
Somatic Experiencing (developed by Dr Peter Levine)
Focusing (developed by Eugene Gendlin)
Gestalt Therapy (developed by Fritz Perls)
Accredited register membership
Areas of counselling I deal with
- Affairs and betrayals
- Anger management
- Domestic violence
- Emotional abuse
- Family issues
- Low self-confidence
- Low self-esteem
- Passive aggressive behaviour
- Physical abuse
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
My standard fee per 1 hour session is for £45 for individuals and £60 for couples.
I am able to offer some concessions, for example, if you are experiencing financial hardship - as I do not believe this should be a barrier to accessing support in difficult times. Please talk to me about this.
I offer an intial no obligation session for £10. This is an opportunity for to discuss your concerns and ask questions about how I work and see whether we would work well together.
If we envisage that we can forge a good working relationship, I usually suggest six sessions followed by a review, so that we can look at if this support is still continuing to meet your needs as the process evolves and goals and expectations can change.
We will need to meet regularly (usually weekly) but can talk about holidays and breaks in the work.
Please visit my website by pressing on the link at the top for more detailed information about what a typical session involves.
Maps & Directions
Type of session
|Face to face counselling:||Yes|
Types of client
|Employee Assistance Programme|