I am unable to take on new clients at the moment.
As a specialist in treating Trauma, Anxiety and Depression, I use my training and experience to help people manage day to day living, sleep well and improve their quality of life. With a free half hour consultation we can explore how this can work for you.
I would describe my approach to treatment as compassionate, collaborative and evidence based. The therapeutic relationship is of the utmost importance and creating an atmosphere where my clients can feel safe, contained and respected is a top priority for me.
Some examples of the conditions that I have treated include:
Traumas - This could be a history of sexual abuse, terrorism, bullying, violent attack, traffic accident or simply something that happened to you that you didn't think was possible - something that just shouldn't have happened. You may be a veteran.
Depression - Consistent low mood, an inability to enjoy things, difficulty doing everyday tasks such as getting up and basic self care, sleep problems and irritability
Bereavement - Maybe you have lost a loved one, such as a relative or pet, or you have experienced some other kind of significant loss
Panic Attacks - A debilitating condition which leaves you thinking something terrible will happen to you
Obsessive Compulsive Disorder - Maybe you have checking routines, thinking routines or compulsions to do things frequently that impinge on your quality of life
Social Anxiety - Or extreme shyness. This can be such a barrier to getting on in life but there is hope and treatment available
Health Anxiety - Do you constantly seek reassurance from friends, relatives, the internet or your GP that there is not something seriously wrong with you? This is very common and can be addressed.
Low self Esteem: Maybe you have trouble standing up for yourself and don't really feel you deserve the good things in life. Perhaps you feel guilty a lot of the time and you don't really like yourself very much
It could be that your loved one is struggling with one of the above and that you need a bit of support.
I am trained to provide CBT, EMDR, Interpersonal Therapy, and Counselling and can help you decide which is the best approach.
The following is a rough guide for you:
Counselling. CBT or EMDR?
Perhaps the most obvious difference between talking therapies is whether the treatment is:
- directive (time limited, goal orientated, collaborative and structured approach)
- non-directive (with the client taking the lead in what is discussed).
It is often difficult for health care professionals to decide on the most appropriate form of talking therapy to recommend to people. Even trained psychological professionals can perform a comprehensive assessment and start treatment before it becomes apparent that perhaps a more non directive approach is required.
In 1987, a respected American Clinical Psychologist and Researcher, Dr Francine Shapiro, made the chance observation that eye movements can reduce the intensity of disturbing thoughts and feelings under certain conditions. Dr Shapiro studied this scientifically. In the 1989 edition of The Journal of Traumatic Stress, she reported success using EMDR in treating victims of severe trauma. Since then EMDR has developed rapidly, and has been widely researched. It is now used by trained therapists all over the world.
How does EMDR work?
When an individual is traumatised, they experience such strong emotions that it is thought to overwhelm the brain. The brain consequently is unable to cope with, or process information as it does ordinarily. Distressing experiences become ‘frozen in time’. They are stored in the brain in the original ‘raw’ form and can recur as ‘action replays’ or intrusive memories. The person repeatedly relives the original unpleasant event/s. Remembering a trauma may feel as bad as experiencing it the first time because the images, sounds, smells, and feelings haven’t changed. Such memories have a lasting negative effect on the way a person sees themselves, the world and other people. It can affect parts or all of their lives, including their ability to work or study.
EMDR seems to directly influence the way that the brain functions. It helps to restore normal ways of dealing with problems (i.e. information processing). Following successful EMDR treatment, memories of the event are no longer painful when brought to mind. What happened can still be recalled, but it is less upsetting. EMDR appears to mimic what the brain does naturally on a daily basis during dreaming or REM (Rapid Eye Movements) sleep: EMDR can be thought of as an inherently natural therapy which assists the brain in working through distressing material.
Is EMDR effective?
Research studies have shown that EMDR can markedly accelerate the healing process after a traumatic experience and that the effects are long lasting. In fact, there are now more scientifically controlled studies on the treatment of post traumatic stress disorders with EMDR than with any other form of psychological treatment. EMDR is highly effective, often preferred by clients and generally of shorter duration than other treatment methods.
It is important to stress that EMDR is a highly effective treatment for any condition where you feel your reaction to situations is disproportionate or you are struggling to contain your emotions.
What is Cognitive Behavioural Therapy? (Directive)
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) is a widely used time limited therapy that treats emotional problems. Cognitive refers to our thoughts and the meanings we give to our experiences. Behavioural refers to our actions and what we do. An important part of therapy is the idea that emotions and behaviour are influenced by perception of events or the way we think about them.
When people have emotional problems, such as depression or anxiety, our thinking patterns tend to change and we focus more on the negative side of things, or we can only imagine the worst scenario in any situation. As a result, we feel worse. CBT helps to identify these unhelpful and often one-sided styles of thinking and teach techniques to overcome them.
What is Counselling? (Non Directive)
Counselling provides a regular time and space for people to talk about their troubles and explore difficult feelings in an environment that is dependable, free from intrusion and confidential. People may seek counselling because of difficult experiences they have been going through, such as a relationship breakdown, bereavement or redundancy. Or they may want help dealing with feelings of sadness, depression or low self-worth that don’t seem to be connected to any particular event.
The following is a rough guide for deciding whether to consider EMDR, Counselling or CBT:
- If you feel that you are being ‘hijacked’ by your emotions and that you know your reactions to situations aren’t ‘normal’.
- You know that you have been through something or things in the past that are affecting how you feel today in a negative way.
- You get ‘triggered’ by things like TV, smells, sounds, places, certain people.
- You are experiencing recurring dreams, night terrors, intrusive images.
- You are easily startled and extra jumpy.
- You have fears or phobias that are stopping you from doing everyday things or affecting your quality of life.
- You seem to be stuck in Grief
- You have OCD, Low self-esteem, low mood or any kind of anxiety (including Panic attacks)
- Things have happened to you that you don't necessarily want to disclose, you may not want to go into the detail but do want to recover. There is a protocol called Blind to Therapist for situations where people feel ashamed or humiliated by what has happened to them and don't necessarily want to share this.
- You are willing to set yourself tasks to do between sessions in order to make change happen and improve your quality of life.
- Anxiety disorders such as phobia, social anxiety, health anxiety, PTSD
- You can identify a clear goal of therapy such as ‘overcome my fear of going out’, stop having panic attacks
- You wish to change yourself in order to feel better and do more (and not expect others to change). Or maybe you know what needs to change but are unsure about how to do it.
- Suitable for relationship difficulties, bereavement, loss, adjustment difficulties (maybe your circumstances have changed and you are finding it difficult to adjust to them)
- When you know that things are difficult and you are struggling but you are not quite sure what needs to change
- When you struggle to identify a goal of the therapy
- When you know you need someone neutral and professional to talk to or get emotional support through an ongoing situation such as a relative’s illness.
I offer clinical supervision.
Training, qualifications & experience
Doctoral equivalent in Counselling Psychology
MSc Counselling Psychology
BSc Hons Psychology
EMDR Accredited Practitioner
BABCP Accredited Cognitive Behavioural Therapist
IPTUK Accredited Interpersonal Therapist
I have spent nine years working for the NHS as both psychologist and manager of a team of clinicians.
From 2004 to 2006 I ran the bereavement service at Arthur Rank House Hospice in Cambridge alongside psychological palliative care work in Oncology at Addenbrookes and at the Hospice.
From 2006 to 2007 I worked initially as a cognitive behavioural therapist in a primary care service in Norfolk specialising in treating Depression. I was then promoted to team leader which I continued to do until 2009 when I left to run a team of clinicians in Huntingdon.
From 2009 to 2013 I managed a team of therapists providing cognitive behavioural therapy to patients referred by their GP for conditions that include panic, phobias, depression, PTSD, sexual abuse, health anxiety, OCD and many more. In this role I supervised accredited staff and trainees, saw patients and managed the team.
I occasionally teach in addition to my clinical work.
Registered / Accredited
Being registered/accredited with a professional body means an individual must have achieved a substantial level of training and experience approved by their member organisation.
British Association for Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapies
The BABCP is the lead organisation for Cognitive Behavioural Therapy in the UK.
Membership is open to anyone with an interest in the practice, theory or development of CBT. BABCP also provides accreditation for CBT therapists.
BABCP accredited members adhere to the Standards of Conduct, Performance and Ethics in the Practice of Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapies, and are willing to be scrutinised in this adherence as required.
Health and Care Professions Council
The HCPC are an independent, UK-wide health regulator. They set standards of professional training, performance and conduct for 16 professions.
They keep a register of health professionals who meet their standards, and they take action if registered health professionals fall below those standards. They were created by a piece of legislation called the Health Professions Order 2001.
Registration means that a health professional meets national standards for their professional training, performance and conduct.
Areas of counselling I deal with
£100.00 per session
Free initial in-person, telephone or online session
EAP/Health Insurance Providers
My fees are £100 per session
Free half hour initial consultation either face to face or over the telephone to help you decide whether you wish to work with me.
Ely - Central location at 'Spa'. This room is on the 2nd floor and there is no lift available. For those with mobility issues I can see you at my Cambridge clinic which is situated on the ground floor. Free parking available just off Broad Street with short walk through to Forehill.
Cambridge - town centre situated behind Shire hall on Castle Hill. Nearest parking is at Shire Hall