About me

Hello, and welcome. I'm Sarah, and I’m glad you've found your way here.

Perhaps you’re looking for some help to make a change in how you feel…?

*  If you're unhappy or angry, feeling guilty, lonely, anxious or misunderstood
*  If your relationships with family or friends are suffering
*  If you’re stressed or feeling overwhelmed by everything

*  If you've experienced a loss or bereavement
*  If you’ve been through a breakup or a setback, either recently or longer ago
*  If you’ve been abused, neglected or bullied
*  If you feel ashamed or frightened
*  If you don’t like yourself much
*  If you're carrying issues or difficulties that stay with you from your past

... or if things have just hit a rough patch and you’re struggling to cope...

... then the chances are that talking to a counsellor could really help you find your way to feeling better.

You’ve already taken the first and bravest step of looking on this website to see what help is available.

Maybe your doctor or a friend or relative has suggested you talk to someone about how you feel?

It's a great sign of strength to be able to ask for help when it's needed.

Sometimes we all go through moments in life when we need the help of someone who is outside of our situation, to offer a new perspective on what we're going through.

If that person is someone who is trained to listen, to hear how you feel, and offer emotional support then that can really help you to find your way around things that may have always seemed like impossible obstacles.

It can be quite hard to decide which counsellor, if any, to contact. I hope that reading a little bit here about me and how I offer counselling may help you to decide if I might be the right person for you to talk to.

I'm a counsellor with over ten  years’ background in listening to people from all walks of life. I’ve worked with vulnerable women and men, young people and students, parents and people without children, gay people and straight people, the employed and the unemployed, businesspeople, retired people, homeless people, married, divorced, separated and single people, civil partners and those in relationships of many different kinds.

Before I trained as a psychotherapist I worked for several charities, including a relationship counselling organisation, a centre for vulnerable women and a day centre for homeless and isolated people. I loved my work; listening to people and supporting them through tough times made me realise that I wanted to do that as a full-time counsellor.

My approach to my clients and their experiences is practical and respectful.   I'll listen closely to what you choose to tell me, and work with you to help you find your own best solution to your difficulties.

You’re always the one who is in charge of what we talk about and you decide where you want our work together to go.

Sometimes people worry a lot about the idea of coming to a counsellor or therapist, as they think things like:

*  “I should be able to cope with this stuff; I feel like a failure because I can't”
*  “I just can't battle with my anxiety by myself anymore”
*  “Surely only weak people need help to handle their feelings?”
*  “Thinking about going to counselling means I must be going crazy”
*  “Other people have worse stuff to deal with than me; my problems seem trivial”
*  “What if the counsellor's shocked, or thinks I'm a terrible person?”
*  “I ought to talk to my friends or family, not a counsellor - but I can't”

If you recognise any of your own thoughts in this list, please be assured - you're not alone. Many, many of us have these same fears, distresses and troubling thoughts.

My job is to help you learn to be a little bit kinder to yourself, and to understand that sometimes we all need some help with handling difficult, painful emotions and situations.

Because I'm not a friend or family member, you don't need to worry about whether I'll think badly of you, or whether I'll be able to cope with what you tell me. I can offer an objective and confidential outsider's point of view to help you find your own way through your difficulties.

If you come to me for counselling or therapy I'll listen to you carefully, offering a safe environment for you to talk, or to be silent, as you wish.  I’ll give you space, time, compassion and attention, so that together we we’ll be able to explore the things that trouble you. I won't make judgements, but will support you emotionally for as long as you need.

Some of the results that people often experience through coming to counselling include:

* Coping better with anxiety, anger, guilt, worries or other distressing feelings
* Discovering more about their feelings, emotions, inner resources and abilities
* Learning new ways to handle the stresses and pressures that they face
* Improving their self-esteem and confidence, learning to like themselves more
* Breaking free from unhelpful habits, attitudes and ways of thinking
* Recognising their strengths and feeling more comfortable in themselves

If you’re thinking about approaching counselling, I really encourage you to make the next step and contact me by phone or email for a first brief discussion.

I’m looking forward to welcoming you, and I hope to help you to experience some of these positive outcomes, too.

Training, qualifications & experience

I trained in Integrative and Existential Psychotherapy at the School of Psychotherapy & Counselling Psychology at Regent’s College in London.   I’m a Registered Member of the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy and I work within the BACP Ethical Framework.t

You are the expert on your own feelings and experiences, and my job is to help you to focus on those, rather than coming to you with any ideas of my own of what may be causing your struggles.

For some people, coming to counselling is the first time that they may have ever been really listened to. It can help you learn to feel and understand your emotions rather than trying to run away or cope with them by blocking them out. Although this can be a difficult process it can also feel really rewarding and can lead to a change in outlook, strength and ability to cope.

This work can help with a wide range of different issues including:

* depression, fear and anxiety
* addictions of many different types
* anger management
* problems with body-image, confidence and self-esteem
* loneliness or isolation
* stress, pressure, feeling out of control
* bereavement and other types of loss and grief
* difficulties with sex and relationships
* the effects of bullying, past or present
* the effects of illness, whether physical or mental
* feelings relating to infertility or childlessness

or a sense of loss of purpose or meaning in life.

I have over ten years’ experience of working with people in the Worcestershire, Gloucestershire and Ayrshire areas, including work with homeless people at a local day centre, and with vulnerable women using two local women’s centres. I also volunteered as a counsellor with a low-cost general counselling service and am at present a trustee of a homelessness charity.

Over the past several years, I've had counselling myself on a number of occasions, so I do have a personal understanding of what it can be like to sit in the client's chair. I know that it can seem quite daunting to begin with, but I have found that talking about difficulties and problems in a safe place, with someone who is trained to listen, can be a really helpful way of resolving them. It can help us to see more clearly, gain insights into ourselves and our emotions, and learn how to make the changes that we need.

Member organisations

BACP

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.

Accredited register membership

British Association for Counselling & Psychotherapy

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.

Other areas of counselling I deal with

Sense of self - who am I?

Is this all there is? - loss of purpose or meaning in life

Empty nest - what next, now that my kids are leaving home?

How to feel more confident and like yourself more

Dealing with a long-term illness

Coping as a carer

Panic and anxiety are ruining my life!

How does my past affect my present?

Fees

£45.00 per session

Additional information

Counselling Fees (per session): Standard fee £45.
Initial consultation session - usually charged at £25.

I know how difficult it is to be put on a long waiting list when you need help. I also know from my own experience how hard it can feel to make that first step to come for counselling. Therefore when potential clients contact me I try to offer an appointment within a week whenever possible, so people don't have too long to wait.

If you have questions about counselling, if you would like to know more about any particular aspect of it, or if you would like to discuss anything about fees, appointments or the usual counselling process before you make a decision, then please call or email me. I will be very happy to help you if I can.

Availability

Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
Morning
Afternoon
Evening
Night

Zoom & Phone: Flexible scheduling available.

Flexible scheduling including early (8-9am), daytime, & evening (after 6pm) appointments.

Further information

Flexible scheduling available including morning (before 9am), evening (after 6pm) and Saturday morning appointments. In the present circumstances my usual way of working is via zoom or telephone appointments


If you telephone me and I am unable to answer your call, please don't be discouraged! Just leave a message or send me an email and I will get back to you as promptly as I can. I aim to respond to all calls and messages within 24 hours.

Here is some of the feedback that I have received from clients:

"I would like to thank you so much for what you have done and the very caring and sensitive way in which you have helped me find some understanding. I feel I have largely achieved my objective of understanding my inner anger and the few sessions we have had have really helped me a lot. Just the opportunity to hear myself saying what has always been just inside has really helped."

"Thank you again for all your support over the last few months.   I feel  stronger, more self-aware, and have a better understanding of, and ability to manage my head and my heart.  You have helped me to move forward."

“If you had asked me a few months ago, I’d have said that counselling wasn't something that could help me. But I was so down that I didn't know what else to do, and actually it has really helped me. I see things a lot more clearly and I feel more in control of my life now.”

“This process is really useful because it’s teaching me how to handle my emotions. If I feel overwhelmed by stuff during the week I can just think: ‘I’ll talk about that in my session on Tuesday’ then I know I can do something about it so it doesn't have to affect my everyday life in the meantime.”

“I didn't think that anything was going to help me with my grief and depression after my loss. But it’s true that talking about things really does help. Nothing is any different in my actual life but I’m just better at coping with things now that I have someone to talk to. Sarah really ‘gets’ how it feels to lose someone and understands what I’m going through.”

"Your support and help have truly helped me to be the person I know was always there but you have helped me "believe" in her. I am sad to say goodbye to you and I know I will shed a few tears but they will be tears of happiness. Thank you."

“I feel stronger and happier because I've realised that I don’t have to be a slave to my feelings. I’m learning how to manage them instead of letting them control me. Thank you for all your support and kindness.”

"I have fully realised the positive impact that coming to see you has had. I really cannot thank you enough for all of your hard work, patience and good will. You are exceptionally talented at what you do and I really hope you have many years of assisting some of the many people in the world who could use your help. In my circle you have helped changed the stigma around counselling which may have contributed to a friend to seek a counsellor during tough times."

(Please note: All these clients have agreed to my using their comments, and all names and personal information have been removed to ensure their confidentiality is maintained.)

Ayr
South Ayrshire
KA7

Glasgow
G12

Type of session

Online
Phone

Types of client

Young people
Adults
Older adults

Online platforms

Skype
Whatsapp
Zoom

Social

Sarah Jeffery

Sarah Jeffery