Sophie Pickering Dip Counselling MBACP (Reg) BSc Hons
What is counselling and how can it help me?
Counselling, for me, is the creation of a trusting and authentic relationship where comfort and ease can be experienced, fears can be explored and brought into awareness safely, and clarity can be sought through confusion and pain. There are many reasons why people seek counselling and your reasons will be unique. Perhaps you have experienced a distressing event or perhaps you feel you cannot manage your emotions or feel your life is out of control. Counselling offers the opportunity to find clarity, acceptance and experience change and transformation.
What happens in a counselling session?
I provide a confidential place for you to explore feelings and issues at your own pace. Having a supportive place to talk about your life with someone objective and professional can really help to bring clarity and understanding and achieve goals you have for the future. I can work with you to gently increase acceptance of yourself and difficulties in your life to support you to reduce reliance on unhealthy habits, make positive changes, improve your relationships and move forward.
Counselling sessions can be both reassuring and challenging. I can offer comfort and support whilst also helping you to gently face difficult feelings and realities. My experience informs me that a counselling relationship which is both supportive and challenging creates an environment where real change and transformation can take place.
I welcome enquiries from LGBTQ+ and BME communities.
Training, qualifications & experience
I am a qualified Integrative Counsellor and trained in relational, Psychodynamic counselling which means that I take a specific interest in our relationships and early babyhood and childhood experiences to understand any feelings or difficulties experienced in the present.
A relational approach focuses on our basic human need for relationships, and how our early relationships influence the way we experience the world and react to it now. I have completed further studies in mindfulness and bodywork (yoga, meditation and breathing techniques) and this is reflected in my counselling approach. I have many years’ experience working with addictions and trauma relating to relational abuse. I have also completed further training to work with young people and couples.
Counselling foundation at Bath Centre for Psychotherapy and Counselling, Bath
Diploma in Counselling at the University of West of England, Bristol
Diploma in Relational Mindfulness at the Karuna Institute, Devon
Certificate in Relational Couples Therapy, Stroud
Cognitive Analytic Therapy
Mindfulness and meditation
Working with depression
Creativity in the counselling relationship
Trauma and the Body
Brief Solution Focused Therapy
Working with anger
Substance misuse and addictions
Working with families systemically
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT)
What kind of things do people talk about in counselling?
Here is a list of areas I regularly work with in my private practice; I have worked with many other issues in addition to this list and I am open to working with any issue or reason you may have for seeking counselling.
- Anxiety and panic attacks
- Depression and suicidal feelings
- Communication and relationship difficulties
- Abuse and trauma
- Relationship problems
- Sexuality and sex
- Post-natal depression
- Addictions, specifically drug and alcohol addiction
- Low self-esteem and confidence
- Mental health diagnosis and treatment
- Childhood trauma
- Issues relating to body image and eating
- Problems at work
My work with couples
There are many reasons why couples may seek therapy to support their relationship. It could be that you are facing a crisis of some kind, starting out on a new journey together, facing changes or challenges or planning ahead for a change you envisage in the future. Couples therapy can be an incredibly healing place to explore your own patterns in relationship as well as exploring the unique connection created between you. Couples sessions can be used to understand each other more deeply and make changes to improve communication and connection. I charge £65 per 50 minute session for couples work. If you would like to arrange an initial session to find out more then please get in touch.
My work with children and young people
For three years from 2012 to 2015 I worked as a counsellor for Off the Record Bristol, a charity which provides counselling and mental health support to young people aged between 11 and 25. In my private practice I offer counselling sessions for young people aged 16 and over. Counselling sessions for young people offer a chance to explore thoughts, feelings and behaviours which are causing distress and learn how to make changes to improve wellbeing. I have a varied experience of working with many issues that can affect life during adolescence. If you wish to discuss your own or your child's situation please get in touch.
Areas of counselling I deal with
- Affairs and betrayals
- Anger management
- Attachment disorder
- Bipolar disorder
- Child related issues
- Domestic violence
- Drug abuse
- Eating disorders
- Emotional abuse
- Family issues
- Generalised anxiety disorder
- Hearing voices
- Learning difficulties
- Low self-confidence
- Low self-esteem
- Panic disorder
- Personality disorders
- Physical abuse
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- Postnatal depression
- Pregnancy and birth
- Relationship problems
- Separation and divorce
- Sex problems
- Sexual abuse
- Suicidal thoughts
- Work-related stress
I charge £50 for individuals and £70 for couples. Concessions are sometimes available, please contact me to discuss this.
Sessions last for 50 minutes.
How many sessions will I need?
I provide open-ended counselling which means that I do not work to a set number of sessions unless this is specified by you as a requirement. Regardless of the length of time we work together, we will regularly review the work completed to ensure that you are achieving the goals and changes you want to make.
Maps & Directions
Type of session
|Face to face counselling:||Yes|
I currently have daytime and evening appointments available on Tuesdays and Wednesdays.
Types of client
Supervision & training
Supervision creates an environment within which we can develop a deeper understanding of our clinical work as counsellors and therapists. It is a space for us to think together about our work, find fresh insights, and share our experiences. As a supervisor, I create a supportive environment for your work with clients as well as your own inner work and development as a practitioner. .