Lisa Cole. Accredited Cognitive Behavioural Psychotherapist (PGDip, BSc hons)
Hello there and thank you for looking at my profile.
I offer you a warm welcome to Allendale Therapy. Within my practice you will experience a confidential and safe environment in which to explore your issues.
Cognitive Behavioural Psychotherapy - what Lisa offers:
I am a Cognitive and Behavioural Psychotherapist. I offer CBT which is a talking therapy that works on the thought patterns and behaviours that create and maintain conditions such as low mood and depression and the anxiety disorders. It can also help when you are feeling that life just isn't quite as good as you think it could be).
Cognitive Behavioural therapy (CBT) is a collaborative therapy where we work as a team, I bring my CBT knowledge and experience and you bring your knowledge about you and how your issues affect you and your goals as to where you want therapy to take you. Together, we combine our knowledge and draw up a "tailor-made" individual therapy plan to meet your own personal needs.
So... Who is Lisa? -her skills, background, and experience:
I am an empathic, caring and non-judgemental practitioner with many years experience within the NHS and in private practice. I hold Post Graduate qualifications in Advanced Cognitive Behavioural Therapy and specialise in treating depression and the anxiety disorders. I bring to therapy a vast bank of experience from working in mental health in the NHS as a Care Coordinator and therapist for people with Moderate to Severe and Enduring Mental Health Conditions, I have advanced knowledge and skills learnt from practice in dealing with risk issues and complex mental health disorders, as well as helping those with more mild to moderate conditions and the differing related issues that come with less severe presentations.
What is so special about CBT?:
Around the world, CBT has developed a respected and solid reputation as a very effective therapy for mental health issues like the anxiety disorders and depression amongst others. It has been rigorously tested in a scientific manner and we have evidence that it works very well for these types of issues. It has a very large evidence base demonstrating its effectiveness and reliability as a therapy, gathered through extensive research and clinical trials.
How CBT can help me:
CBT looks at our thought patterns and behaviours, both of which are key in developing and maintaining a mental health difficulty like anxiety and depression. We look at your individual thinking patterns and thoughts and learn how to observe them and recognise when our thoughts may be unhelpful or inaccurate. We then develop skills in identifying new more accurate and helpful thoughts which we can use to "replace" our old and unhelpful thoughts. Within the therapeutic environment we can change the way we think and develop new, more positive and sustainable patterns which lead us to the wellbeing we so desire.
In the same manner we explore our behaviours, the activities we do or don't do on a daily basis that create mental distress and keep it going. We aim to identify unhelpful patterns and then gently make changes and test out new, more positive behaviours, repeating them until we gain confidence and feel good about them and incorporate them into our new and wonderful way of being.
CBT gives you the skills, strategies and self-knowledge to be your own therapist long term. These are useful skills that you can use in so many situations and enable you to stay well and to feel empowered and confident in overcoming the difficulties that life may throw at you.
Developing a more positive relationship with yourself.
I have a special interest in helping people overcome low self-esteem, perfectionism, tackling their inner critic and in helping people overcome barriers to finding their true purpose and meaning in life. In therapy we aim to uncover those deeply held patterns of thought which treat us so harshly, so unfairly and sabotage us from achieving a feeling of contentment within. I aim to enable my clients to tap into their own innate wisdom and develop a compassionate relationship with themselves, to develop an "inner friendship" and turn the volume down on the inner critic. After all you are in your head with you for the rest of your life, so why not try and establish a friendship with you. Even just a truce can make a world of difference when there has been an inner battle every day. We very rarely take time to really get to know ourselves, what makes us tick, our values, hopes, dreams, how we can care for ourselves so we really thrive.
We may be frightened about what we may find if we do get to know ourselves more so we keep busy and distracted. Therapy can help and support you through that process to gaining increased self-knowledge and a happier inner-self. Imagine what it would be like to wake up with and be able to hang out with your best friend - You- every day, experiencing a kinder inner voice, a peaceful, non-judgemental, compassionate mind, engaging in meaningful activities and a life aligned with the values that you hold dear. It may feel far away or even an impossible distance right now, but wouldn't that be a goal worth striving for?
Where is Lisa based and how does she do therapy?
I am based in Northumberland in the UK and offer face-to-face appointments as well as Skype appointments, telephone appointments and appointments via Messenger. Distance appointments can be very helpful for those living further away, or those with busy schedules, limited time or have commitments which make it hard to get away for therapy. There can certainly be benefits in not having to travel and to have therapy in the comfort of your own home!
The therapy base is in a discreet environment just off the market square in Allendale, with plenty of parking and a bus route stop within a minute or twos walk. There is a flight of steps so if you have any mobility issues we can arrange to meet across the road at the Allendale Forge, where the therapy rooms are easily accessible, or at an alternative and mutually agreed venue.
Please do let me know if you have any special requirements or needs i.e. learning difficulties, visual or hearing impairment or any disabilities or caring responsibilities etc so that I can best provide therapy to suit your individual needs. I do my very best to tailor make my service to suit you.
Who does Lisa work with?
At present I work with private individuals, corporate clients and charities, however I am happy to explore other areas and meet whatever needs and requirements you may have.
I currently work with clients aged 16+.
What to expect in my first session.
I understand that starting therapy can feel very daunting for many of us, so it can help to know what will happen in our first session.
We will have usually had a chat beforehand and I will have sent you an initial email confirming the date of your first appointment and attached my biography, a couple of short questionnaires that we use regularly to monitor anxiety and depression, the therapy contract and a crisis plan (helpful telephone numbers and what to do if there is a mental health crisis).
On the day whether it is face-to-face, telephone, Skype or Messenger, I will guide you through the session gently. We will talk about things like confidentiality, and what to do if you need to cancel a session and I will ask some background information about you, such as your GP's name and practice details, your home situation, relevant current information and any information from the past that may be helpful to know about in therapy, i.e. any past mental health difficulties, or past trauma, bereavement, life stressors etc.
We will look at what your current difficulty is and build up a shared understanding of the difficulty itself and how it affects you. We will create a formulation exploring what caused the difficulty and what is keeping it going. From this formulation we can also work out what we need to work on to bring the difficulty to an end or ease it. We will develop goals for therapy, what you would like to get out of therapy, our destination.
We will work at your pace and all steps taken in therapy are made with your agreement. Therapy includes things like exploring whether our patterns of thinking are helpful and accurate and if not, test out new more helpful ways of thinking. We may test out new behaviours or try stopping other behaviours, but this is all done slowly and in a way that feels manageable to you. We also will review progress every few sessions to make sure we are still going in the direction you want therapy to go in. My aim as therapist is to enable you to develop knowledge, strategies and skills so that you become your own therapist and you are empowered to overcome and manage your own difficulties independently.
People often wonder how long therapy goes on for. It really depends on the difficulties you are experiencing, however CBT is a short term intervention, so it does not go on forever! It is usually anywhere between 6-10-12 sessions and occasionally may go beyond 12 sessions to 15 or even 20 if there is need to do so.
What to do next:
Please don't hesitate to get in touch for a no obligations, free chat to discover how CBT may be able to assist you in overcoming your difficulties and achieving your goals. You may have got to the point of feeling that life as it is not as good as you think it should be, your difficulties may be starting to feel intolerable and you want to make some positive changes and reclaim your life back, but maybe don't know where to begin or feel worried about making those steps alone. Well, let us work together in overcoming your difficulties and building the bright and beautiful life that you want to have, as a team. You are not alone with this.
I very much look forward to talking with you and working with you :-)
Do get in touch today!
Training, qualifications & experience
My Qualifications and Professional Experience:
I am a qualified and experienced Cognitive Behavioural Psychotherapist, with many years working in both the NHS and private practice. I am also accredited with the BABCP (British Association of Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapists). I have bachelor's degrees in both Occupational Therapy (and Illustration!) as well as several qualifications from the Open University in "Psychology" and a post-graduate diploma in "Advanced Cognitive Behavioural Therapy". My professional career started in 1998 in Occupational Therapy and I worked in the NHS in a variety of mental health settings.
Occupational Therapy looks at the activities we as human beings do, often when we develop anxiety or depression we stop or change the activities we do, which maintains and often worsens our condition. Sometimes anxiety and depression begins when we change our patterns of activity. Activity holds great meaning for us as individuals, it links into our self-esteem, our values, gives us a sense of purpose, we can achieve a "flow experience" and can enable us into a state of self-actualisation which is the ultimate state of human happiness and fulfilment. My background in Occupational Therapy brings a deeper level of understanding and influences my work as a Cognitive Behavioural Psychotherapist.
Our behaviour is interlinked with our thoughts (cognitions) and CBT works by influencing both of those areas, over the course of my work I have developed effective skills in helping clients become aware of the underlying thought patterns behind conditions such as depression, anxiety disorders (i.e. PTSD, Health Anxiety, OCD, Social Anxiety, Phobias etc) as well as other disorders such as eating distress/disorders, personality disorders, psychosis etc.
Often our thought patterns can be unhelpful and keep us locked in a negative pattern, many of our thoughts are not factual or "real", yet we believe them and react to them as if they are true. These negative patterns zap us of energy, swallow up time unnecessarily and make us feel sad. CBT helps uncover these unhelpful patterns and create awareness and distance, so we can develop new, positive, more accurate and evidence based, healthier thoughts and free us from our old negative patterns of thinking and their knock-on effects on our lives.
It truly is a wonderful path of self-discovery and the beauty of it is that the client learns to become their own therapist, so you develop skills that you keep for life, to manage and maintain your own wellbeing. It is so powerful and so empowering!
Through the course of my career, I have become fascinated with not only recovery from mental health issues, but also following through beyond recovery into how we as humans can create true and lasting happiness and wellbeing through our thoughts and our behaviour.
Areas of counselling I deal with
- Anger management
- Anorexia nervosa
- Asperger's syndrome
- Attachment disorder
- Binge-eating disorder
- Body dysmorphic disorder
- Bulimia nervosa
- Career counselling
- Carer support
- Child related issues
- Chronic fatigue syndrome/ME
- Domestic violence
- Eating disorders
- Emotional abuse
- Feeling sad
- Gender dysphoria
- Generalised anxiety disorder
- Hearing voices
- Internet addiction
- Learning difficulties
- Low self-confidence
- Low self-esteem
- Obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD)
- Panic disorder
- Passive aggressive behaviour
- Physical abuse
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- Postnatal depression
- Seasonal affective disorder (SAD)
- Sex addiction
- Sexual abuse
- Suicidal thoughts
- Work-related stress
Other areas of counselling I deal with
Mindfulness and meditation
Living in accordance with one's values
Photos & videos
How much does it cost?
Sessions are generally £55 per session (an hour long) and £40 for those on lower incomes.
(Prices are discretionary - I do want to make therapy affordable for all, so please do contact me if price is an issue and we can work out a mutually agreeable cost).
How many sessions do I need?
CBT is a time-limited therapy and we regularly review how we are doing in meeting your goals. Therapy may be anything from 6-12 sessions and sometimes up to 20 or so, depending on your individual needs. It is usually weekly initially and then we increase the distance between appointments to fortnightly and then monthly as therapy goes on, so that you develop independence and confidence in your ability to use your new skills to manage, cope with and overcome your particular issues long term.
Maps & Directions
Type of session
|Face to face counselling:||Yes|
I am available during weekdays, weekday evenings and can be available on Saturday mornings or other times at the weekend for an increased fee.
Types of client
|Employee Assistance Programme|