Sarah Hamilton, PGDip (Psych), MBACP (Accred)
Are you struggling to cope?
Do you want to feel differently, or act differently, or relate to difficult life-events in a more spacious and accepting way?
My work is about helping people to achieve meaningful, lasting changes in their life and their relationships.
Whether you're trying to lift depression or low self-esteem, or wanting to transform anxiety or anger, I can help you find ways to change the present and find peace with the past.
I work with adults of all ages, and teenagers from age 13 upwards, at my clinic in Hay-on-Wye.
Issues I work with
I have helped people resolve a very wide range of difficulties, from stress and anxiety to anger, bereavement, low self-confidence, and work-related issues.
I am particularly experienced at working with trauma and PTSD, personality disorders, Aspergers, depression, relationship and family issues, and separation and divorce.
Even if you think your problems are so BIG, or so entrenched, that nothing can fix them - I can help. In my work I’ve seen that everyone has the capacity to get ‘un-stuck’, no matter how difficult a place they may be in.
Would you like a no-obligation chat about your situation? Call in confidence on 07580 482 751.
I know it can take huge courage to consider talking to a therapist. It may feel risky, or shameful, to speak about your problems. It might even seem impossible that changes could actually happen in your life, just by talking to someone.
But counselling is a particular kind of conversation. We orient ourselves to the detail of your experience; we pay attention to the things that normally get skimmed over; we ask different questions. We’ll maintain a gentle, steady curiosity about you and whatever you’re facing.
As things get spoken out loud and looked at together, the circular narrative that takes place in the closed circuit of your own mind can begin to shift – to move forwards. You and your story can start to ‘make sense’. You can stop operating so often on autopilot, start choosing different responses to the world where appropriate... and begin to achieve the changes you want to see.
How I work
Our conversations will take quite a different shape depending on what kind of changes you're looking for, and the goals we agree for our sessions. But whatever we talk about, you can expect our time together to cover the following stages:
- Assessing and Exploring: We look together at what you’re facing, how it’s affecting different areas of your life, and what you’d like to be different. We’ll get curious about your life-patterns, your coping strategies, and habits of thought – so we can start to make sense of your experience.
- Mindful Observation and ‘Life Testing’: This is when changes start to happen. We take time to observe, reflect, and deepen our understanding, at whatever pace is right for you. We’ll identify and engage your existing resources, challenge old habits where necessary, and consider new tools for problem-solving where necessary. And as you begin to ‘test out’ new ways of being, we’ll notice carefully how things affect you on a practical, physical and emotional level.
- Consolidation and Ending: We fine-tune and strengthen your new sense of self, and make sure it’s comfortably embedded in your daily life. We’ll review the changes you’ve achieved, look at how you'll cope with any future difficulties, and make sure you leave feeling stable and confident.
How long it takes
Everyone faces different challenges – and has their own natural pace for change. So the above three ‘stages’ of counselling might take as few as six sessions for some people, while for others, they might extend over months or sometimes years. Of the people I see, the average is around 15-18 sessions.
Training, qualifications & experience
I am an experienced counsellor and psychotherapist, fully accredited with the BACP, with an enhanced DBS-check for working with young people.
My working life has included retail and restaurant work, teaching, web-development, marketing, and management. A fascination with communication and psychology eventually led me to the field of talking therapies in 2011.
Since then I have worked as a counsellor and psychotherapist for adults and young people in the private and charitable sectors, and in the NHS. I co-founded and managed a network of counsellors across London and Reading, and ran a successful private practice in Harley Street (London) before moving to Hay-on-Wye in 2017.
At the heart of my professional qualifications is a rigorous four-year Postgraduate Diploma in Psychotherapy. My studies covered a range of therapeutic approaches so I can work flexibly with each person. I've also undertaken many specialist courses, particularly in the areas of trauma-treatment, mindfulness, neuroscience, and counselling for young people.
Areas of counselling I deal with
- Affairs and betrayals
- Anger management
- Asperger's syndrome
- Attachment disorder
- Bipolar disorder
- Chronic fatigue syndrome/ME
- Family issues
- Generalised anxiety disorder
- Hearing voices
- Low self-confidence
- Low self-esteem
- Passive aggressive behaviour
- Personality disorders
Photos & videos
My standard rate per 50-minute session is £60.
I do have some flexibility for those on limited incomes and can offer reduced rates down to £35 where necessary. If you think you will struggle to pay the standard rate, please let me know when you first contact me.
Private medical insurance
I am a registered practitioner with Aviva Private Healthcare. If you would like to pay for your sessions through private medical insurance, please let me know when you contact me. Insurance fees are £80 per session.
Employee assistance programmes
I am happy to accept referrals from EAPs (Employee Assistance Programmes). Please contact me for further information.
Maps & Directions
Type of session
|Face to face counselling:||Yes|
I offer sessions by Skype video for those unable to reach my office in Hay-on-Wye.
Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday
Types of client
|Employee Assistance Programme|