Dip.Couns, MBACP, MNCS (Accred)
I am an experienced counsellor and psychotherapist with over 25 years experience of working within mental health. I have a warm and empathic approach and offer a nonjudgemental, safe and therapeutic space in which to explore whatever has brought you to counselling. Having the courage to listen to yourself and have someone bear witness to your pain is truly the best gift you can give yourself in regards to being able to live your life ahead has fully and as actively as you can. My work focuses on the individual rather than the symptoms and looks to explore what elements are missing or blocking you from having the life you desire.
Starting something can often be anxiety provoking - not knowing what to expect, or how it will be. I encourage you to take that first step, call or email me to set up an initial session. Here we can talk about want you want to get out of counselling and explore what you'd like to have help with. If you're happy we can then set up a further session and make arrangements to continue weekly or fortnightly. It may be that a single session is all you want at this time too and this is an opportunity for you to discover what feels right.
What to expect in your first session
Your first session will be about why you are looking for therapy; what you want to achieve from the therapy, and agreeing how we are going to work together (an opportunity for us to discuss frequency and the approach and establish the boundaries of the working therapeutic relationship). I will probably ask you a number of questions to help you decide whether you will both be comfortable working together and to check that you can be offered the most appropriate support.
Your first session is an opportunity to see if I am the right therapist for you, to get a feeling for how I work, your readiness to embark on therapy at this time and to identify what it is you may wish to be working on within therapy.
How Counselling can help
Often before starting, many clients may wonder whether counselling will really help them with their problems. Being able to take the time to sit and talk through your issues in a non-judgemental space can be a new experience for some and one that can facilitate the reprocessing of sometimes painful emotions. Having someone with whom to share this experience who seeks to understand you can be an empowering experience which can be transformational and ultimately freeing.
Counselling offers a safe and non-judgemental space to examine what your mind and body are communicating while exploring and challenge your thoughts and the meaning of your feelings and other behaviours.
I believe that everyone can benefit from therapy and it is as important in maintaining and looking after your overall health as exercise and eating healthily. Our mind has the power to control our whole experiences and therefore needs us to regularly allow it to discharge and let go of what is no longer serving us well. By taking a deeper look at what is happening or has happened to you it's possible to move towards making meaningful and longer lasting changes.
How I work
I am trained in both Person Centred and Existential therapeutic approaches and I draw from these in my work. My practice is also informed by Mindfulness and Trauma based theory and I tailor my approach to the needs of the individual. My approach seeks to understand the client from their own perspective and draws upon a belief that often our behaviours are coping mechanisms to deeper unconscious distress that we are not aware of. It may be that we identify unhelpful thought processes which we can work together to explore.
I offer both short and long term ongoing counselling for adults and young people with a range of issues including anxiety, depression, stress, eating disorders and lack of purpose/loss of direction. I also am trained in single session therapy which can be something that some clients are interested in which allows specific focused individual 'one at a time' work.
I see the working relationship as fundamental to whether clients feel counselling is successful. I place a lot of emphasis on the development of a strong therapeutic relationship which for me is based around trust and respect.
My ethos is that each individual has within themselves the tools they need to heal. Through the formation of a trusting therapeutic relationship, the development of self awareness allows the discovery for what it means to be in the world and how to exist as a fully authentic version of oneself. For me, finding meaning and purpose to life can be something many people seek to uncover. Sometimes unprocessed pain can block the way, I can support you to explore this and become aware of your own process.
I am a registered member of the BACP and abide by their abiding by their Ethical Framework in practice and also an accredited member of the NCSD (National Counselling Society).
Training, qualifications & experience
I trained and worked as a mental health nurse in the early part of my career working within Adult and Young Peoples’ services (including Eating Disorders) across the NHS and private sector in London.
I have worked in many different therapeutic settings as a counsellor including a charity for young people 16-25 years, educational settings as well as my private practice.
I also work as a Kids and Young Person Coach - supporting wellbeing through psycho-education and support (www.kidsmindskills.co.uk).
Some examples of further training and qualifications :-
Diploma in Person Centred/Existential Therapeutic Counselling CPCAB (Guildford College)
Foundation Certificate in Counselling and Psychotherapy
(Bath Centre for Psychotherapy and Counselling, BCPC)
Diploma in Nursing Studies (Mental Health) RMN
St Bartholomew School of Nursing and Midwifery (City University)
Diploma in Child Psychology (Level 4) current
Brentwood Open Learning College
Introduction to Brief Counselling in a University Setting.
OAAT - Single Session therapy
Internal training: Dual Diagnosis; Eating Disorders (Bulimia and Anorexia Nervosa) and Mental Illness in Children and Adolescents.
Internal Family Systems training
Trauma Informed Practice
Youth Mindfulness SOMA training
CBT for Child and Adolescent Disorders (SDS Seminars)
British Mindfulness Institute - Professional Training in the applied Use of Mindfulness for 12-18 year olds
Youth Mindfulness Kids Programme
Child Protection in Education - Level 2 (EDUCARE)
Eight week MBCT (Mindfulness based Cognitive Therapy)
Early Interventions in Psychosis (APT - Association for Psychological Therapies)
Introduction to Group Analysis (Institute of Group Analysis)
ICF Accredited Life Coaching qualification - (New U Coaching)
British Association for Counselling & Psychotherapy (BACP)
BACP is one of the UK’s leading professional bodies for counselling and psychotherapy with around 60,000 members. The Association has several different categories of membership, including Student Member, Individual Member, Registered Member MBACP, Registered Accredited Member MBACP (Accred) and Senior Registered Accredited Member MBACP (Snr Acccred).
Registered and accredited members are listed on the BACP Register, which shows that they have demonstrated BACP’s recommended standards for training, proficiency and ethical practice. The BACP Register was the first register of psychological therapists to be accredited by the Professional Standards Authority (PSA).
Accredited and senior accredited membership are voluntary categories for members who choose to undertake a rigorous application and assessment process to demonstrate additional standards around practice, training and supervision.
Individual members will have completed an appropriate counselling or psychotherapy course and started to practise, but they won’t appear on the BACP Register until they've demonstrated that they meet the standards for registration. Student members are still in the process of completing their training.
All members are bound by the BACP Ethical Framework and a Professional Conduct Procedure.
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
Fees from £75 per session
I do offer discretional concessions for Students and those struggling to pay.