Imi Lo: Psychotherapist, Art Therapist, Supervisor (MMH,UKCP,HCPC,MBPsS)

Imi Lo: Psychotherapist, Art Therapist, Supervisor (MMH,UKCP,HCPC,MBPsS)

About me

Hi! I am Imi, a registered Clinical Psychotherapist, Art Therapist and Supervisor. I am also a Certified Schema Therapist, Mentalisation-based Therapy Advance Practitioner, a fully-trained EMDR therapist, a mindfulness teacher (MBSR, MBCT), mental health social worker and a holistic yoga teacher.  Combining my lifelong passion with clinical experience, I founded Eggshell Therapy in London.

I have dedicated my entire professional life to working with emotionally sensitive and intense people on the following issues:

  • Extreme and unpredictable mood swings
  • Sensitivity to criticism and rejection, over-reacting to certain situations
  • Being drawn to the same type of partner/ relationship over and over, even when your emotional needs are not met
  • Being isolated and feeling alienated by others
  • Getting stuck in patterns of impulsive and self-sabotaging behaviours
  • Struggling to say no, feeling guilty even when you have done nothing wrong
  • Feeling numb and empty for most of the time, except when the emotions 'explode'
  • Chronic anxiety and restlessness
  • Existential Anxiety and Suicidal thoughts
  • Creativity blockages

In other words, I specialise in working with issues related to the experience of feeling and living intensely, especially the pain of being told – spoken and unspoken – that you are ‘too much’—‘too intense’, ‘too sensitive’, ‘too emotional’.

My work is grounded in the ‘highly sensitive people’ (HSP) concept, sensory processing sensitivity, ‘over-excitabilities’ in gifted individuals, attachment theories, psychoanalytic theories and the latest neurobiological research on emotion regulation.

My aspiration to work with emotional intensity first emerged in 2006, when I witnessed people who are unable to manage their emotions being misunderstood, marginalised or described as having ‘personality defects’. Hearing pejorative labels such as ‘manipulative’ or ‘attention seeking’, and seeing people who do not fit neatly into diagnostic criteria slip through the cracks of the mental health system frustrate me. I believe that these problems can and should be overcome.

Having worked with many gifted and emotionally intense individuals, conducted research and written about this topic, I have now accumulated a body of knowledge, and ways of working that can most effectively benefit emotionally intense people and those around them.

More about me:

I am an award- winning mental health professional, with more than ten years of experience working with Emotionally Unstable (Borderline) Personality Disorder, LGBT population, highly sensitive and gifted people.

After gaining the Master in Mental Health from the School of Medicine in Australia, I was determined to broaden my knowledge and skills through exploring various therapeutic avenues.  I am trained in evidence-based methods including Mentalisation- based Treatment (MBT), Schema Therapy, Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing (EMDR) for Trauma, Art Psychotherapy, Mindfulness- based therapies (MBSR, MBCT), and Hypno-psychotherapy. Instead of taking suggestions straight from these models, I weed out the jargons and or overly complicated elements, to include only what I know to be effective and resonate best with you. After all, underneath all the theories and techniques, I still believe it is our relationship and the genuine feelings I have for you that makes therapy work. I cannot hide behind theories and you will know it if I do.

Leaving my job in the NHS specialist team has allowed me to work in a holistic, creative and authentic way. I decided to devote all my passion and resources to Eggshell Therapy- a practice that is dedicated to working with emotionally intense people. Since its opening, I have been able to help people from all around the world. Every day, I am grateful every day that I get to sit alongside many creative and intelligent individuals, fulfilling my mission to liberate them from the bind of negative patterns, and to live full and authentic lives.


I value clarity and openness, and I am a great believer in sharing knowledge with you, as well as actively engaging with your existential and day-to-day questions.

I look forward to being with you.

Training, qualifications & experience

Academic Qualifications

  • Professional Doctorate in Counselling Psychology and Psychotherapy (Ongoing)
  • Master in Mental Health (School of Medicine, University of Queensland)
  • Postgraduate Diploma in Psychology (MBPsS, Graduate Basis for Chartered Membership)
  • Certificate in Psychotherapy Clinical Supervision
  • Advanced Diploma in Contemporary Psychotherapy (UKCP)
  • BSc. in Social Work (Hons)

Specialist Psychotherapy Qualifications

  • Certified Schema Therapist for Personality Disorders
    • Certified by the International Society of Schema Therapy
  • Mentalisation-based Therapy Practitioner (Advanced) for Borderline Personality 
    • Anna Freud Centre, University College London (UCL)
  • Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing (EMDR) for Trauma
    • Fully trained by accredited trainings approved by EMDR International Association (EMDRIA) and EMDR-Europe Association (EMDR-E)
  • Mentalisation-based Art Therapy
    • British Association for Art Therapists
  • Contemporary Hypno-psychotherapy at Beeleaf Institute, London
  • Neuro- linguistic Programming (NLP) Master Practitioner


Teaching and Speaking

I have delivered lectures and workshops for trainee therapists seeking accreditation as a faculty member of the Beeleaf Institute of Contemporary Psychotherapy, an accrediting authority of the UK Council for Psychotherapy (UKCP). Some of the topics I have covered include Human Development, Psychopathology, Attachment theories, Personality Disorders and Suicide crisis management I also supervise therapists in training as a clinical supervisor and mentor. With students’ consent, the following are testimonials for the workshops I have delivered:

Imi has an incredible wealth of knowledge and talent in her subject areas, and she shared it with us in a totally accessible way that felt inclusive & respectful at all times. Her humility compassion & warmth blended with her expertise and professionalism throughout. It was a thoroughly enjoyable & informative learning experience...

    — Lesley C.,  Lead family support worker at London Borough of Kensington and Chelsea

Insightful, brilliantly delivered, flowing with compassion and understanding, giving us time to digest this complex area of therapy. Thank you so much Imi.

    —  Ed Luttrll, Director & Principal Coach at BlueTouchPaper Consulting

Imi has an incredible wealth of knowledge and talent in her subject areas and she shared it with us in a totally accessible way that felt inclusive & respectful at all times. Her humility compassion & warmth blended with her expertise and professionalism throughout. It was a thoroughly enjoyable & informative learning experience...

   — Lesley C.,  Lead family support worker at London Borough of Kensington and Chelsea

Insightful, brilliantly delivered, flowing with compassion and understanding, giving us time to digest this complex area of therapy. Thank you so much Imi.

   —  Ed Luttrll, Director & Principal Coach at BlueTouchPaper Consulting


Media Mentions

- Psychologies Magazine: How Sensitivity Can be a Superpower, Nov 2017

- The Telegraph article: Borderline Personality Disorder: 'I couldn't deal with the rollercoaster in my head', Feb 2015

- Marie Claire feature article 'How to Toughen Up', Issue March 2016*

- Refinery29 article, How Do You Know Which Therapy Is Best For You?, Jan 2017

- Feature interview by The Debrief Magazine, on The realities of dating when you are struggling with your mental health, May 2016

- Happiful magazine, on Emptiness and Borderline Personality Disorder, April 2017

- Foreword for the Art for Mindfulness Colouring book series.
- Interview, MX Brisbane, on 23rd November, 2010
- Press Release/ Interview, City Brisbane, on 25November, 2010
- Radio Interview, 4 ZZZ Radio Interview on 12 June 2011


Experience

  • Psychotherapist – Personality Disorder Specialist Team, NHS
  • Trainer and Module Leader - Beeleaf Institute of Contemporary Psychotherapy (UKCP)
  • Non-Executive Director- Emergence Plus
  • Clinical Practitioner, Care Coordinator- Personality Disorder Community Team, NHS
  • Founder of Eggshell Collective, London BPD Sharing Group
  • Suicide Counsellor – Samaritans Suicide Crisis Intervention Centre, HK
  • Honorary Psychotherapist- London Friend, UK
  • Wellbeing Centre Officer– Mind, Richmond Royal Hospital, UK
  • Mental Health Mentor- Randstad Student Support, UK
  • Eating Disorder Inpatient Ward – NHS
  • Art Therapist- Tennyson Special School, Australia
  • Counselling Practitioner- Centacare Family Services, Australia
  • Taipei Psychiatric Hospital Drug & Alcohol Unit, Taiwan

Professional and Academic Award

  • Endeavour Award (International), 2010 – Australian Government
  • Dean’s Commendation for High Achievements in Master of Mental Health, 2011
  • Dean’s List Recipient 2009, School of Social Work
  • Social Work Departmental Prize and Class Scholarship
  • HSBC Social Science Scholarship, 2008, 2009

Accreditations

  • Accredited Clinical Psychotherapist (UK),  United Kingdom Council for Psychotherapy
  • Registered Art Psychotherapist, Health and Care Professional Council
  • Registered Social Worker, Health and Care Professional Council
  • Certified Schema Therapist, International Society of Schema Therapy
  • MPSsS, Graduate Basis for Chartered Membership, The British Psychological Society

   

Member organisations

Registered / Accredited

UKCP
HCPC

Accredited register membership

Other areas of counselling I deal with

I am passionate about dispelling destructive myths and stigma about borderline personality disorder (BPD), and provide evidence-based treatment for related issues such as fear of abandonment, moods swings, anger outbursts, impulsive and compulsive actions, chronic anxiety, suicidal thoughts and urges to self-harm.

My goal is to create deep and lasting shifts that dispel your difficulties at their roots. On top of a mere intellectual shift (which is where many traditional forms of therapy, such as short-term CBT), we aim for changes on a visceral and emotional level.

Because true healing and come from lasting changes on physical, emotional and behavioural levels, the work should be integrative and holistic in nature. Instead of having a fixed, rigid modal, it is important to find out the unique way of working that best resonate with you.

Photos & videos

  • Why I do what I do
  • The Therapy Room and Sandplay Collection
  • The library and waiting room
  • Charlotte's Story
  • Is your past holding you back from true intimacy?
  • Message to the sensitive, intense and gifted
  • The Gifted Women and Impostor Syndrome- Interview
  • Imi Lo: Psychotherapist, Art Therapist, Supervisor (MMH,UKCP,HCPC,MBPsS) image 1
  • The Entrance
  • Our garden room
  • Imi Lo: Psychotherapist, Art Therapist, Supervisor (MMH,UKCP,HCPC,MBPsS) image 2
  • Eggshell Therapy
  • Eggshell Therapy
  • Imi Lo: Psychotherapist, Art Therapist, Supervisor (MMH,UKCP,HCPC,MBPsS) image 3
  • Imi Lo: Psychotherapist, Art Therapist, Supervisor (MMH,UKCP,HCPC,MBPsS) image 4
  • In Psychologies Magazine
  • Certified Schema Therapist
  • Mentalisation-based Therapy (Advanced Training)
  • Master in Mental Health Award

Fees

HOW FREQUENTLY DO WE MEET?

I do not have a fixed rule about the frequency of our meetings.

The old gold standard of having weekly (or more frequent) session is arbitrary and does not reflect authentic and unique individual needs. Yes, sometimes having some regularity can help us settle into an emotional rhythm. However, in our fast-moving modern world where you might already feel stretched in multiple directions with financial, life and work demands, a weekly set-time schedule may seem undoable.

I do understand that entering therapy is not a light undertaking- financially, emotionally, and pragmatically.

At the same time, I believe that nothing is more important than investing in yourself and building a solid foundation for your relationship and creative endeavors in life. (Preaching what I teach, I still attend therapy weekly for my growth and wellbeing!)

I believe that the therapy happens not just within the hour; in fact, the real work begins in your real life. If we were to meet less frequently, I might offer certain ‘reflection prompts,' specific homework or exercises, so that the work continues in-between sessions.

I trust you to find your own pace and would try my best to work with you to find a balance between cost, your readiness, and our progress.


FOR HOW LONG?


I understand your desire to get better fast. You may have read online or in books that there is no 'quick fix' for the particular issue you face. This may be true, but it is not impossible to feel some shifts in 5 - 10 sessions. There is much value in ongoing support, but in contrast to some other models of long-term therapy, our goal is to effectively equip you with the needed insights and capacity, so you can be free to live a full life as soon as possible.

I would always encourage you to give it a try for at least 5 sessions. Most people do experience some changes within 12 - 20 sessions. If you decide half-way through that it doesn't work for you, you have the full right to withdraw and I will respect your decision.

HOW MUCH?


All online or face-to-face therapy and coaching are GBP 120 per session. I charge a flat rate for all sessions, including the initial one.

With a credit or debit card, you can book your session with a secure online process.

With less than 24-hour notice, my cancellation policy is to collect the agreed amount of payment. The same rule applies to me, where if for any reason I were to miss a session, your next session will be free-of-charge.

Published articles

Further information

WHERE SHALL WE MEET?

We can meet either online or in person.

MEETING ONLINE

Meeting online is no longer a second-best solution. With its own merits, it is something that is different to, but not inferior to face-to-face therapy. I work with clients from around the world so actually, half of my sessions are conducted via Skype.

Here are some of my thoughts and experience with meeting online:

Research has found that Skype therapy can be as effective as face-to-face. In fact, there are times when online therapy can bring out a level of depth and progress that in-person session cannot. In a nutshell:

Have you ever felt that an hour of traveling to your therapist’s office through the tube, settling to the new environment and checking in, you are no longer able to connect with the emotional materials that most need to surface? These may be the times where you feel frustratingly numb and empty, and unable to connect. This is understandable, especially if disconnecting have been part of your way of protecting yourself from feeling emotionally vulnerable. Many people have found having therapy from home allow them to feel safer, more at ease and in control. Being in the comfort of your own home can enable you to feel more at ease and in control, so you can open up at your readiness.

Meeting online can bring out a level of depth and progress that in-person session cannot.  Having someone with you in the here-and-now of your battles can alleviate the loneliness that many sensitive and intense individuals have carried all their lives.

By meeting you in your private space, I am meeting you in your world, in real time. This is especially useful if you struggle with bouts of intense emotional storms, periods of depression, and feel that emotional triggers surround you. Meeting online would give us more opportunities to ‘strike while the iron is hot’ in the space where your day-to-day struggles occur. I also get to have a more vivid sense of your difficulties, to help you bring the new learnings or insights into your actual life.

Most intense and gifted people are resource-rich but time-poor. Perhaps your competence attracts expectations, you have high standards for whatever you do, and your multiple passions tug you in a million directions.  You may already be confronted with the feeling that there is never enough time to do all that you want to do, or have to do. If you were already battling with a sense restlessness and urgency, overwhelming responsibilities from inside and out, travelling stress is the last thing you need. Meeting online gives you the benefit of flexibility- so you can use your time and money in ways that you want to, rather than being limited by the public transport system or traffic.

Throughout the years, I have been able to develop deep emotional bonds, spiritual friendships, and go on incredibly moving journeys with many intense and sensitive souls via Skype, even when we have never met in person.    Everyone is different, I personally have a lot of good experience with meeting online.

FACE-TO-FACE SESSIONS

Eggshell Therapy has a permanent base in Southwest London. It is within 10-minute walk from Colliers Wood tube station. For more please visit: eggshelltherapy.com

Maps & Directions

London, SW19

Type of session

Online counselling: Yes
Telephone counselling: Yes
Face to face counselling: Yes

Practical details

Sign language: No
Other languages: None

Availability

Monday to Friday

Types of client

Young people
Adults

Supervision & training

Supervision available