There are times in life when we feel like we’ve been knocked out of shape and we don’t know how to feel better. At these moments we can feel out of control and struggle to cope. It could be that we suspect difficult experiences in the past are affecting our lives now or that a relationship is caught in a never-ending loop.
All this, I can assure you, is normal and it happens to us all, often many times throughout life. It’s so important that we can ask for help without feeling 'like a failure’ or that spending money and time on ourselves is self-indulgent. On the contrary, counselling can be the best investment we ever make – not just for ourselves but also for those we love.
Clients have told me that when they are with me they feel understood and safe. They feel able to voice the thoughts they’ve not been able to say, even to themselves. Being able to express our whole self is vital in understanding what is troubling us.
My intention is to offer a supportive and therapeutic space where you have the opportunity to untangle your emotions and sift through those elements of your life that you are dissatisfied with. I will draw on my knowledge of various theoretical approaches as and when I feel that may be beneficial. I will strive to understand how life is for you, to listen to you fully and offer back to you what I hear. Through this, you will be able to properly understand yourself and know what you need to be different. It might mean changes in your relationships, in the way that you talk to yourself, or how you perceive and react to others.
I believe that counselling is about growing your awareness of how you feel and act around others and of allowing yourself more choice in your responses. As you grow your understanding, you are more likely to behave in a way that ensures you will get what you need; and through that, you will feel more at ease with yourself and with those around you.
What it’s like to work with me
The foundation of my approach is humanistic, drawing especially on person-centred and emotion-focused theories. This means that I value above all else the client’s autonomy and inherent wisdom and I view our counselling journey as a collaborative venture. I believe that our emotions provide us with important information about what we need. Often, however, they can be unclear, confusing or even frightening.
In an emotion-focused approach to therapy, the therapeutic relationship is essential to the process of understanding what is causing us to feel the way we do. Our emotions are adaptive – they help us get what we need – but our emotional reactions to events are also shaped by our unique histories and relationships.
Understanding the reasons we feel a certain way is a delicate but vital process through which emotions are brought to the surface and talked through. This experiencing of emotions and the subsequent making sense of them through dialogue is key to our understanding of our thoughts, feelings and behaviours.
Your mind and its emotional system are unique to you and cannot be reduced down to a medical diagnosis or pharmacological intervention. Focusing on emotion in a counselling environment provides us with more targeted, precise information about what is happening in your mind. Indeed, recent neuroscientific research provides compelling evidence for the healing power of an empathically-attuned therapeutic relationship.
Training, qualifications & experience
Expert Adviser for the Institute of Directors, specialising in the management of bereavement in the workplace.
- Postgraduate Diploma in Counselling from York St. John University (Distinction)
- MSc. in Organisational Psychology and Coaching from Birkbeck, University of London (Merit)
- BSc. in Psychology from the Open University
- Supervisor and client support for Cruse Bereavement Care (until 2020)
- Registered member of the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP). I adhere to their Ethical Framework.
My route to counselling began at Cruse Bereavement Care. Perhaps surprisingly, I found working with bereaved people a profoundly hopeful experience. We have the capacity for huge resilience in the face of grief and trauma. This knowledge compelled me to explore other areas of counselling and, ultimately, to become a fully qualified counsellor.
Today, I work as a general counsellor in private practice and as Expert Adviser at the Institute of Directors. I also volunteer at the Counselling and Mental Health Centre at York St. John University.
I have completed additional training to be able to offer counselling online (Zoom, for example) and by phone.
British Association for Counselling & Psychotherapy
BACP is one of the UK’s largest professional bodies for counselling and psychotherapy. Therapists registered with the Association fall into a number of different membership categories such as Individual Member, Registered Member MBACP and Registered Member MBACP (Accred), each standing for different levels of training and experience. MBACP (Accred) and MBACP (Snr Accred) members have achieved a substantial level of training and experience approved by the Association.
Registered members can be found on the BACP Register, which was the first register to achieve Accredited Voluntary Register status issued by the Professional Standards Authority. Individual Members will have completed an appropriate counselling and/or psychotherapy course and started to practise, but will not appear on the BACP Register until they've progressed to Registered Member MBACP status.
All members are bound by a Code of Ethics & Practice and a Complaints Procedure. Accredited by the Professional Standards Authority.
Accredited register membership
Accredited Register Scheme
The Accredited Register Scheme was set up in 2013 by the Department of Health (DoH) as a way to recognise organisations that hold voluntary registers which meet certain standards. These standards are set by the Professional Standards Authority (PSA).
This therapist has indicated that they belong to an Accredited Register.
Areas of counselling I deal with
I offer an initial 20 minute phone call without charge. This gives you the opportunity to say a little about what brings you to counselling now and what you hope to get from it, as well as to ask any questions you may have. The counselling relationship is a crucial part of successful therapy, so it’s important for you to see whether you feel you could comfortably work with me.
If, after that initial call, we decide to work together, I will send you a welcome pack and ask you to complete some paperwork prior to our first session.
During our first session, we will discuss in more detail your hopes and concerns, and we will agree an initial number of sessions. Counselling may last for a few weeks or for over a year. We will frequently review how you feel we are progressing towards what you hoped for.
Currently, I am running a hybrid practice, offering sessions online (via Zoom) or by phone on weekdays and face-to-face sessions on Saturdays in a central location in York. Research shows that remote mediums can be as effective as face-to-face counselling and for some clients they offer a preferable alternative.
I offer short-term and long-term counselling to adults.
Sessions last for 50 minutes. I offer weekday, evening and weekend appointments on a flexible basis. At the start of therapy, it is most helpful to meet weekly and then as you progress, you may prefer to meet fortnightly.
I aim to respond to enquiries within 24 hours. If you've not received a response within 48 hours, please check your spam folder as my email may have been misdirected there.