Jo Byron-Russell PGDip MBACP
*** Spaces available in transformational therapy groups, please see below for more information***
I am a warm, approachable and insightful counsellor with experience supporting individuals, couples and groups facing a wide range of difficulties in their lives. As a fully qualified counsellor, I provide a therapeutic relationship that is genuine and equal, in which I am neither the expert who tells you what to do nor the passive counsellor who remains separate and disconnected. Instead, it is a collaborative process in which my acceptance, empathy and in-depth training can support you in exploring what it is that brought you to this point and how to move forward. I work in a wonderful tranquil space just on the outskirts of Lewes. The converted Granary sits on a quiet private road on a farm and has magnificent views of the Downs. You can literally get away from it all for a moment of pause and consideration.
I am deeply passionate about counselling, personal and social transformation, empowerment and growth. I am fortunate to be able to share this passion as a Counselling Lecturer and as a mentor to newly qualified therapists. This also means that I am challenged to continually reflect on best practices and be open to new developments in the field.
My personal experience of counselling has taught me just how valuable it can be and yet I also understand that taking the first step towards starting counselling can be challenging. For some of you, searching this site may be a significant move in itself. Or it may be that you already have had an experience of counselling and simply want to make sure you find the right person. Either way, I am here to answer any questions you may have, without obligation. If it feels right, you are welcome to contact me for a free initial meeting just to talk through what has brought you here and see if working with me feels right.
Sometimes life throws issues at us that can overwhelm us, wear us down and leave us struggling. It may be recent or past events that you feel you need to process. Or perhaps you simply wish to explore your life so that you can live it more consciously and fully. Feelings of sadness, pain, anxiety or anger can become relentless, unbearable and debilitating. This can prevent us from reaching out to others and mean that we feel isolated or unseen, even when we are not alone. At times like these, it may help to talk to someone you feel comfortable with, who you can trust and who is not personally involved in your life. Together with a counsellor, you can work through your difficulties and you can feel supported and accompanied on your journey.
Humanistic counselling is a varied group of therapies that offer diverse ways of approaching life’s problems. However, they all have in common a fundamental belief that people can change and lead more fulfilling lives and that a supportive, non-judgmental therapeutic relationship can facilitate this. One of the objectives of humanistic counselling, apart from alleviating the distress that a person is experiencing, is for the person to begin to see him or herself differently. This can mean a sense of power and freedom, rather than feeling controlled by the past and one's feelings. I don’t apply a fixed model to the people I meet; instead I seek to understand life through your eyes and support you in gaining more clarity about yourself and your life. Feel free to get in touch.
Therapy groups are not as common in the UK as in other countries, yet are shown to be at least as effective with added benefits. The cost is significantly cheaper than individual sessions and in addition to having a space to process what you are wishing to work through, you can also receive unexpected learning and growth from the issues that other members bring. Furthermore, groups allow us to experiment with different ways of relating to others, which can significantly improve our quality of life and deepen our relationships. I run one women's group on Wednesdays at 1pm, and will soon be starting a general therapy group on either Monday or Wednesday evening. The groups will run in 6 week blocks for 1.5 hours each session with a contribution of £25 per person. Group size is 4-7 people. I will meet each potential member for a free initial session before starting with the group. Please get in touch if you would like to know more.
Training, qualifications & experience
I am a fully qualified counsellor with a Postgraduate Diploma from the University of Brighton, which has a reputation for both academic and clinical excellence and is accredited by the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy(BACP). I gained in depth training in different approaches, such as Person-Centred Therapy, Transactional Analysis, Gestalt therapy and Existential Therapy. With an awareness of various types of counselling, I believe I am equipped to meet each person as a unique individual, without the need to fit them into one fixed model. In this way I can offer an open encounter, in which theory only plays a guiding role at times when it is useful.
I have also undergone advanced training in Group and Couples Therapy as well as Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction and other meditative approaches and can incorporate these in our sessions if you wish.
I am always committed to learning and developing as a counsellor and for this reason am regularly in continual professional development.
Although I believe in meeting the person and not the symptom, I have experience counselling individuals facing a number of difficulties in their lives, such as
- family and relationship issues
- divorce and separation
- substance addiction
- low self-esteem
- eating disorders
- anxiety including generalised anxiety disorder
- anger management
- postnatal depression
I have a particular interest in supporting people through life transitions, as I know how tumultuous these times can be, even when they are positive. Whether the transition into parenthood, or the end of a relationship, into adulthood and leaving home, or changing jobs, I can support you in making sense of the shifts and in being an active agent in your life during these changing times.
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.
Areas of counselling I deal with
Research has shown that one of the most important aspects of successful therapy is the relationship between counsellor and client and so it is important to me that you to find the counsellor who is right for you. For this reason, I offer a free first meeting for us to get to know each other, answer any questions you may have and decide if to continue our work together.
Beyond this, my fees are £55 per session.
I strongly believe that counselling and psychotherapy should be accessible to any person who needs it, which is why I also offer a scale of £40 to £70 per 50 minute session. Please let me know if you either cannot afford my normal fee or if you would like to contribute more in order to subsidise sessions for those on a lower income. I do not ask for proof of income, we will agree a manageable amount together which can be reviewed should your circumstances change.
I also have a small number of significantly discounted sessions available, please get in touch to find out more.
Please feel free to call or text me on 07853162294 if you have any questions about counselling in general or if you would like to book our initial session.
Alternatively, email me at email@example.com