Hello and thank you for reading my profile. I am a British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) accredited counsellor and I adhere to their code of ethics.
Why I might be the right counsellor for you
1) I have 30 years of counselling experience seeing people of all ages and cultural backgrounds and dealing with many of life's problems. I use a range of approaches to suit such as psychodynamic, solution focused and cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT).
2) I have particular expertise in working with trauma/abuse and I am trained in Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprogramming (EMDR) to advanced level. Sounds a mouthful, but this is an internationally used technique with a very good evidence base. Evaluations show that it can have significant results in reducing the impact of recent or historical trauma. EMDR can be effectively used by video or face to face.
3) I am also a trained life coach. This looks more at identifying and planning ways of meeting goals such as improving confidence or assertiveness or refocusing your life. It is more about enhancement and less about problem reduction. Having said that it can work stand alone or woven into a counselling approach.
How counselling works
We can all experience life problems or get stuck. Counselling can help by having an objective, non-judgemental person who is outside of your day-to-day life. As a counsellor I aim to provide space, understanding, support, experience and strategies to find positive ways forward.
What might you expect in an initial session with me
A) Explaining and answering any questions you have about counselling or coaching.
B) Exploring the present day concerns that have brought you and some past history. The greater the understanding I have, the more I can comment in ways that could be helpful for you.
C) Identifying your needs/goals.
D) Agreeing if we can work together in a collaborative way.
E) Starting a 'working together' plan for future sessions if you decide to continue.
My background and approach
I have worked as a university student counsellor and coach over the last 18 years and before that I was a bereavement counsellor and a volunteer for a counselling charity working will people of all ages. I have worked closely with other mental health professionals where an agreed collaborative approach is of benefit. I also have extensive experience in delivering workshops such as managing stress and anxiety and confidence building.
I was trained as a psychodynamic counsellor (understanding how our past upbringing and development influences the present). I now work as an integrative therapist drawing on different approaches such as cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) and solution focus which focuses more on the changes we wish for and less on the problems that can hold us back!
I pride myself on being a flexible and adaptable therapist working with people to identify what may work for you as an individual. So if I have something in my 'tool kit' that fits what you are telling me (some theory or a practical exercise) I can offer that to you. I am also keen to regularly seek feedback to know that our working together is focused and on track. I work very interactively and clients have told me that they value my comments and reflections and feel understood by me.
Common issues that I work with
I have worked with a wide range of issues such as anxiety/panic, excessive stress levels, low mood/depression, loss and bereavement, relationship problems, low self-esteem, perfectionism and trauma/abuse.
I would be very happy to discuss more about what I offer and how it can help if you contact me with your questions and thoughts. I offer a short free initial video or telephone consultation to see if the sort of therapy that I offer might be useful for you.
Please note that if you are making an enquiry to me by e-mail, I would advise that you keep the enquiry information to a minimum - to best protect sensitive information. We can discuss details when we speak by phone.
All the best in your search and finding the support you need.
Training, qualifications & experience
Key qualifications are
- Post Graduate Diploma in Psychodynamic Counselling 2001
- Diploma in Life Coaching 2007
- Online Counselling Services and Training: Online Counselling Skills Certificate: 2010 -updated in 2020 for working by video.
- British Psychological Society Approved Certificate in Clinical Supervision 2015.
- Short-term Integrative Counselling: 2005
- Solution Focused Brief Therapy: 2005
- Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) - Uncover Strengths and Build Resilience: 2007
- Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprogramming (EMDR) to advanced level: 2009 -updated in 2020 for working by video.
- Mindfulness Skills for Use with Clients: 2009
- Introduction to Compassion Focused Therapy for shame and self-critical difficulties: 2012
- CBT Anxiety Traps and Antidotes: 2012
- CBT Best Practices for Depression and Suicide: 2014.
- Polyvagal theory -understanding our autonomic nervous system in building safety and connection to others: 2021.
University student counselling (all ages and issues): 18 years experience.
Bereavement counsellor working with parents, grandparents and young people: 2 years experience.
Working for a low cost counselling charity with people of all ages on any issue: 15 years experience part -time.
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.
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
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.
Areas of counselling I deal with
I offer face to face, video or telephone counselling from Tuesdays to Thursdays (daytime and evening). Times negotiable. I use a free and secure encrypted video system called doxy.me.