What is emotional therapeutic counselling?
ETC is a person-centred talking and creative therapy to help clients experiencing distress in their lives. The distresses’ (or emotional blocks) can take the form of many emotions:
- Lack of self-esteem
- Lack of confidence
These emotional responses can be brought on by a life changing event, relationship or family issues, ongoing sadness or low mood, work related issues or deep seated unresolved issues.
How do ETC therapists work?
The ETC process aids the expression of feelings and thoughts and creatively allows the client to understand their true feelings in a trusting and empathetic environment. The Therapist’s aim is to explore where the emotional wounds originate from. By therapeutically working through their feelings, the client will be able to cope more effectively with distresses in the future. This is turn will help the client to move on more positively with their lives.
ETC work is based on the premise that our feelings affect our behaviour. ETC looks behind the symptoms that a client is experiencing and looks to reach the cause of the problem. How we respond and react to situations is dominated by how we feel about ourselves, others and our environment. Our mind is protecting us from further damage to our feelings and emotions which can cause emotional blocks. This repressive mechanism can creative anxiety, depression, phobias, etc.
Our natural defences shield us from hurtful feelings so as to protect us from hurt, loss and pain. Human nature does not accept vulnerability, but tries to hide it away and suppress the pain. Being a vulnerable human being allows us to feel, understand and deal with empathy; an essential part of living. Clients who suffer from hurt, loss and pain often shy away from commitment and relationships, to shield themselves from being rejected or abandoned. By accepting their vulnerability, clients can understand its meaning and bring emotional blocks to light to enable healing.
The 'Inner Child'
Our early life’s experiences shape the adult we will become. We call this our Inner Child. Learning to accept, love and forgive past experiences is the key to ETC. As we grow, we learn to hide away the attacks on our personality and repress these feelings. The key to finding positivity in life is by understanding and acknowledging our Inner Child’s experiences and learning to release negative feelings developed in childhood.
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About Heather Shipley
Heather Shipley is a CBT and Emotional Therapeutic Counsellor (DipFETC MNCS MFETC). Her style of counselling is person-centred and includes talking and creative therapies for children, adolescents and adults. For further details: www.hshipleytherapy.co.uk.