St Leonards On Sea
I am an Integrative Psychotherapist, a Psychosynthesis Counsellor and an Artist. I am also licensed to use S.E. Somatic Experiencing which is a therapeutic approach to working with anxiety, stress and trauma. I will say something below about how I bring these different trainings together in order to help you.
It is generally understood that overwhelming stress and sometimes unrecognised and unresolved trauma - lie at the root of the majority of problems causing people to seek professional help.
Though our western culture offers much that is of enormous value to us, it tends to over-value the rational and technological and constantly requires evidence of our material success and achievement. It can set a pace which leaves us struggling to deal with too much, too fast and too soon. Our subtly balanced and sensitive animal bodies usually bear up but can become dysregulated and out of balance. Then our health, humanity and even our sanity can feel under threat.
It is also coming into common knowledge that if our nervous system perceives some threat to us, it will mobilise our going into the 'Fight' 'Flight' or 'Freeze/shutdown' response it deems to be the most effective way to protect us in the face of a particular danger. This can happen very fast or slowly over time. It is often unconscious and can seem automatic with our fearing we are losing control of ourselves and the situation and our sometimes doing exactly that. Though we're taken by surprise by such nervous system responses to danger, they are actually there to protect us until a threat is passed. Wild Animals instinctively know this and will at some point safely discharge the energies their nervous systems have mobilised in response to it.
We differ from animals in that our highly developed human brains attune to our complex technology oriented human cultures. We tend to live somewhat dissociated from and ignoring the continual promptings from our instinctual animal bodies. As a consequence we can stay caught in one or all of these useful, 'in the moment', response patterns long after any danger is over. And this can be for moments, days, months or even years. We are very likely to know that something is wrong but not that our nervous system is stuck in dysregulation and that we can actually learn to assist its coming back into balance. Such dysregulation can constantly divert our attention and severely limit our energy and access to other resources. Resources in ourselves and in the outside world that we need to access in order to create the life we wish to live.
Symptoms such as constantly returning states of anxiety, agitation, disquiet, rage, depression and even suicidal feelings can claim our attention and severely effect our energy levels. And/or we may simply feel a hopelessness or lack of engagement with life and the self that had some vision of where we were going to in life.
At such a time we may need more than the help of family and friends or medication alone to find resolution and our way forwards and out of the feelings of overwhelm and impasse we're feeling stuck in.
As a therapist I include the SE approach in both my counselling and psychotherapeutic work as I find it really increases the effectiveness of these, “talking“, therapies in addressing some of the problems I've described above. I find it a particularly useful approach in that it can assist us in opening up a quieter space in which it becomes more possible for us to talk about, work with and start to resolve what is troubling you. I also like its compassionate, careful and patient approach as it fits well with my own.
S.E. is developed from neuro-scientific understanding of how our nervous system constantly does its work to balance and protect us. In utilising that knowledge it offers quite simple ways to help us regulate and manage our responses – both to ourselves and to others. When we feel we've lost touch with a self that previously coped, it can aid a return to managing and being once more in relationship to ourselves and others.
Although S.E. encourages us to be more aware of our bodies and their helpful self regulating systems, its being effective doesn't necessarily need to involve any touch or physical bodywork as such. And you don't need to have any understanding of neuro-science for it to be helpful to you.
It simply suggests ways of listening to and utilising the good information that is available in your somatic experience.(i.e. the store of knowledge and often common sense that your body holds). And this store of knowledge can be included and utilised by us as we look at what has brought you to ask for help. Your difficulties may have arisen from identifiable stresses or from stress that seems to have no apparent cause; from particular difficulties or a deeper more traumatic event/experience. All of these can result in your having a sense of overwhelm that may arise from present circumstances; or be a legacy from earlier life experiences or be a very confusing interweaving of past and present.
My being an Artist means that I really value creativity as a resource that every single one of has to draw upon. I am not talking about art therapy here and I will not require you to have any artistic capabilities.
( Needless to say, they will be welcomed if you have and if they are important as an issue you wish to look at and work with). However,I am really speaking here of the inborn, powerful and very real creativity we all have and use to manage and create our lives on a daily basis. The imaginative capacity we are born with and which is an enormous resource that assists in ensuring our survival. A resource we may easily dismiss in ourselves and often willingly attribute to others instead.
I see that creativity arising in our ordinary and differing abilities to think, feel, sense, intuit and imagine. Those arising for example in humour and from those everyday practical skills and ordinary and occasionally extraordinary talents we enjoy and use to navigate our way in the world. It is my experience that the talents and abilities you may have forgotten or lost touch with - can be accessed to assist us in your work to find some resolution and healing for the difficulties you're facing.
My Psychosynthesis concerns which are at the heart of my work as a therapist come in here. – a quality of soulfulness and a sense of our own life's path may need retrieving. And we may have questions about how we can live a life which holds meaning and purpose both for us and for others.
I bring S.E. together in my Integrative approach with some other ways of working.
For example, I take a Jungian approach to dreamwork as I value mythology and the archetypal realm. As well as our talking together I may suggest we work with guided imagery, dreams, drawing or painting, breath and body awareness and sound and gesture.
* But please note: your feeling comfortable with using any of these is very important and if you are not - we will not use them.
*Please note again: You do not need to have any knowledge of these approaches or creative skills of any sort for us to work together. Nor any knowledge or understanding of trauma or neuro-science. What is necessary is your willingness to look at and work with your difficulties. There is always room for humour, joy and a sense of wonder to come into the work too.
To conclude: I am aware that responses to trauma can vary enormously from one person to another. We are all born into different life circumstances and carry different ancestral,cultural, racial and gender legacies which contribute to our sense of who we are. Some seem fortunate in being apparently well resourced emotionally, physically and materially. Others less so. At the present time of social, political and ecological uncertainties and change we can also feel challenged in our ideas and certainties about ourselves in our life and in relation to the lives and well being of others on our planet.
Contacting me and what happens after that:
Please e mail me on email@example.com and I will try to answer any ?s you have - or you can contact me by phone on 07814401547.
My fee is £50 for a 60 minute session and there is some room for negotiation. My qualifications are below. I am a UKCP registered Integrative Psychotherapist and Psychosynthesis Counsellor and a member of SEA UK. My qualifications etc. are given below at the very end.
A next step would be meeting together for both of us to see whether I am going to be the best person for you to work with. If we decide to go further, I'll suggest 6 weekly sessions of 60 mins after which we can review how our work is going. You may decide to stop or to continue working with me at this point. Of course you are free to stop and end our professional relationship at any time but my suggesting 6 sessions is an encouragement to give yourself enough time to see if our work is useful for you.
S.E. has been developed by Psychologist, Dr Peter Levine in relation to the work of Neuro -Scientist
Dr Stephen Porges. More information can be found about them on line.
Training, qualifications & experience
My Previous relevant working experience.
Before and during my trainings I worked in different Educational and Community settings and in Community and Hospital based Mental Health Teams before going into private practice as a therapist in London. I have now moved to East Sussex and work in the Hastings area. I am a Training Therapist for Counselling and Psychotherapy Training Organisations.
Qualifications: ( also see below). I am a UKCP, ( United Kingdom Council for Psychotherapy), registered psychotherapist and Psychosynthesis Counsellor and have been reaccredited in 2003,2008 and 20013.
Diploma in Art and Design/Fine Art. Hornsey College Art, London (now inc. Middlesex University).
Diploma in Psychosynthesis Counselling. Psychosynthesis and Education Trust, London1986
Diploma in Humanistic and Integrative Psychotherapy, Bath B.C.P.C. 1998
Licensed to practice SE Trauma work in May 2014 - member of SEA UK Somatic Experiencing Assoc.
Completed Supervision training at Re-Vision (Centre for Integrative Psychosynthesis )London 2003
EMDR Training to Advanced level in early 2000. I no longer offer this.
Life Span Integration Trauma Training with Peggy Pace in 2007 - Birkbeck College London
Post grad. work with stress and trauma related issues at Chiron Centre for Body Psychotherapy.
Accredited register membership
Areas of counselling I deal with
- Affairs and betrayals
- Anger management
- Antisocial personality disorder
- Attachment disorder
- Avoidant personality disorder
- Bipolar disorder/Manic depression
- Body dysmorphic disorder
- Borderline personality disorder
- Child related issues
- Chronic fatigue syndrome/ME
- Dependent personality disorder
- Domestic violence
- Emotional abuse
- Family issues
- Generalised anxiety disorder
- Histrionic personality disorder
- Internet addiction
- Low self-confidence
- Low self-esteem
- Narcissistic personality disorder
- Panic disorder
- Paranoid personality disorder
- Passive aggressive behaviour
- Personality disorders
- Physical abuse
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- Postnatal depression
- Pregnancy and birth
- Relationship issues
- Schizoid personality disorder
- Seasonal affective disorder (SAD)
- Separation and divorce
- Sex addiction
- Sex problems
- Sexual abuse
- Suicidal thoughts
- Work related stress
Maps & Directions
Type of session
|Face to face counselling:||Yes|
TUESDAYS WEDNESDAYS THURSDAYS 9 – 6PM. (Some negotiation possible).
Types of client