Sarah Pettitt Verified Professional Verified Professional
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BSc (Psych), Adv Dip, MBACP

About me

Hello, my name is Sarah and welcome to my counselling profile.  You may feel apprehensive about starting therapy, but it can help you to understand life's problems, feel more able to cope and positively move on with your life.

I am a trained integrative therapist, which means I incorporate different styles of therapy into my practice.  These therapeutic styles include Psychodynamic, Person-Centred, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) and some creative therapies.  Below, I will briefly explain each of these therapeutic approaches.  However, please visit my counselling website (www.spettittcounselling.com) for more information about these therapeutic approaches and the concerns they can help with.

Psychodynamic: this approach explores issues that may have evolved from the client's past.  It believes that relationships and events from the past, such as childhood, influence our adult lives.  This approach can help with lots of concerns, particularly relationship problems, depression and trauma.

Person-centred: this approach helps a client to grow and fulfil their potential.  The client is seen as an expert on themselves so the counsellor plays a supporting role of exploring and understanding the client's troubles.  The person-centred approach helps a client to achieve greater self-awareness.  It is effective in helping with specific problems, such as depression, anxiety, stress, grief, abuse and other mental health concerns.

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT): this approach is based on your thoughts, feelings and behaviours being interconnected.  For example, how you think affects the way you feel and therefore behave.  CBT helps a client to be more aware of and change their unhelpful thoughts, which then changes negative emotions and behaviours too.  Unlike other therapies, CBT focuses on current problems only (rather than the past).  It is solution-focused, looking at practical ways to improve your state of mind on a daily basis.  CBT can help with a number of mental health concerns, such as depression, anxiety, obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), stress, phobias, and trauma.

I support clients with a wide range of concerns, but I work mainly with issues such as anxiety (including panic attacks), depression, bereavement, personal relationships, abuse and trauma.  For more information about common concerns I work with, please visit my website (www.spettittcounselling.com).

My client group includes men and women of all ages, ethnicities and cultural backgrounds.  I see young people and counselling students at the centre too.  I run a monthly anxiety group, which is a space for people to come together, share their stories and feel supported.

People often ask how many sessions they will need.  The duration of counselling depends on the issues you are bringing to the sessions.  Some people need a few sessions to help with a specific presenting issue, others much longer if they are making sense of past experiences.  Each person's counselling journey is different and that is ok!  I regularly review the work with clients so they can monitor their progress in relation to their original goals of coming to therapy.

So how you can you be sure I am the right counsellor for you?  That is something only you can decide, but I am happy to have a chat on the phone to discuss your situation and any concerns you may have about coming to counselling.  I also respond to any questions you may have via email.  You may then like to have an introductory session which is a chance for us to meet in person and discuss your reasons for coming to therapy in more detail.  We can then decide if I am the right counsellor for you.  This meeting does not commit you to further sessions.

If you would like more information about my services then please contact me or visit my counselling website (www.spettittcounselling.com).

Training, qualifications & experience

  • Accredited member of the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP)
  • Advanced Diploma in Humanistic Integrative Counselling, CPPD Counselling School
  • Diploma in Humanistic Integrative Counselling, CPPD Counselling School
  • Counselling Skills Certificate Level 2, The College of North East London
  • First Class Honours in BSc Psychology, Cardiff University

Recent training:

  • Working with Survivors of Childhood Sexual Abuse
  • Responding to Anxiety and Depression
  • Trauma

Alongside my private practice, I work for a women's aid charity to support survivors of historic and current abuse.  I help clients to understand the dynamics of abuse and perpetrator behaviour whilst psycho-educating about healthy relationships.  I also help clients to manage their trauma (e.g. panic attacks, flashbacks) by developing healthy coping mechanisms, such as relaxation techniques.  This can involve breathing, grounding and mindfulness exercises.  If safe and appropriate to do so, the client may start to re-visit and process their trauma in therapy.

Since 2015, I also work as a counsellor in a London secondary school.  Counselling as an early intervention can help to prevent young people developing serious mental health problems later on in life.  It also reduces potential risks to their safety.  If you are a parent looking for a counsellor for your child, I would be happy to discuss your concerns via phone or email.  Whilst counselling sessions are confidential for young people, I try to work alongside parents to ensure the support is consistent for the young person.

I have trained and worked as a counsellor for Grief Encounter, a bereavement charity in London.  I supported children and adults individually with their grief, but also ran groups and workshops about bereavement.

Member organisations

Registered / Accredited

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.

BACP

British Association for Counselling & Psychotherapy (BACP)

BACP is one of the UK’s leading professional bodies for counselling and psychotherapy with around 60,000 members. The Association has several different categories of membership, including Student Member, Individual Member, Registered Member MBACP, Registered Accredited Member MBACP (Accred) and Senior Registered Accredited Member MBACP (Snr Acccred).

Registered and accredited members are listed on the BACP Register, which shows that they have demonstrated BACP’s recommended standards for training, proficiency and ethical practice. The BACP Register was the first register of psychological therapists to be accredited by the Professional Standards Authority (PSA).

Accredited and senior accredited membership are voluntary categories for members who choose to undertake a rigorous application and assessment process to demonstrate additional standards around practice, training and supervision.

Individual members will have completed an appropriate counselling or psychotherapy course and started to practise, but they won’t appear on the BACP Register until they've demonstrated that they meet the standards for registration. Student members are still in the process of completing their training.

All members are bound by the BACP Ethical Framework and a Professional Conduct Procedure.

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.

British Association for Counselling & Psychotherapy

Fees

Additional information

Daytime appointments: £50

Evening appointments (after 6pm): £55

Online sessions: £50

Telephone sessions: £50

A limited number of low cost sessions are available for students/unemployed

I am offering discounted sessions (£40) for key workers during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic

Payments can be made before the session via bank transfer or in cash on the day of the session

Please note- the full session fee is charged if you cancel with less than 48 hours' notice

All sessions are 50 minutes

When I work

Morning, afternoon and evening sessions available.

2 Station Parade, Cherry Tree Rise, Buckhurst Hill, Essex, IG9 6EU

Type of session

In person
Online
Phone

Types of client

Young people
Adults
Older adults
Groups
Organisations
Employee Assistance Programme

Key details

Wheelchair user access

Wheelchair user access

Wheelchair-accessible premises should have step-free access for wheelchair users and individuals who are unable to climb stairs. If a Counsellor's premises aren't step-free, they may offer alternative services such as telephone/web-based appointments, home visits, or meeting clients in different location, so you can choose the option that suits you best.

You can contact the Counsellor to discuss the options available.

Under the Equality Act 2010 service providers have a duty to make reasonable adjustments to ensure that individuals with disabilities can access their service. You can read more about reasonable adjustments to help you to access services on the CAB website.