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ABOUT ME

My studies and current work

 

I am a qualified counsellor and psychotherapist. I am a member of the BACP (British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy). I hold a Level 4 Diploma in Therapeutic skills.  Alongside my 4 years of training to be a counsellor, I also undertook a BSc Psychology degree and subsequent MSc in Psychology. Whilst Counselling and Psychology are different fields, I feel that my studies within Psychology have broadened and deepened my knowledge to understand the variations that exist in all of us when it comes to our emotions, feelings, behaviours and relationships.  Furthermore, my dissertations have both involved the counselling elements included in the courses, because ultimately that is where my passion lies. That is understanding how what I have learnt can be applied into the counselling sessions to help not only me, but more importantly my clients, to understand themselves.

I currently work with over 15's and adults with a range of diversities, in private practice. This is from my home in Shorne which offers a lovely view of fields from the conservatory. I work with clients who experience difficulties with anxiety; OCD; depression; relationships which includes families; friends and partners; low self worth and self esteem; PTSD ;sexual, emotional and physical abuse; bereavement, loss and those who are towards the end of their life. I also find that some of these can overlap and you also cannot always put how you are feeling into a box or put a label on it.

My work experience previously before private practice was working with with adults (mainly parents) at a family hub working with a range of mental health difficulties. I also worked as a bereavement counsellor working with adults in a hospice, where the age ranges from young adults to older adults (over 80’s). My personal experience of working with more older adults has demonstrated that it does not matter what age you are, counselling can be hugely beneficial.

  • Level 2 Certificate in Counselling Skills (CPCAB)

  • Level 3 Certificate in Counselling Studies (CPCAB)

  • Level 4 Diploma in Therapeutic Counselling (CPCAB)

  • BSc- Bachelor of Science (Hons) in Psychology 

  • MSc- Master of Science in Psychology

  • MBACP-  Member of the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy

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Why am I a counsellor?

It is certainly not something that I have always known I have wanted to do. Life, as it can do threw a few things my way at different points which included chronic illness, being a young mum, supporting a loved one through cancer, loss and a marriage breakdown. I I found that I could mostly get through these times on my own and manage, I was known for my resilience so how could I ask for help?! But there were times that I struggled, I needed someone to talk to and despite knowing that I had some friends and family that would be there, I felt alone during these times. What I needed was someone to talk to that was not connected to me and my life at all, no judgement of my decisions however I never realised this at the time (hindsight is great isn’t it?!). It has always been in my nature to listen to others’ problems without judgement and to try to understand it from their perspective, but I reached a point where I wanted to be the person that I needed at those times when I struggled which led me to want to be a counsellor. Through my own counselling, it became even more evident that counselling with the right person for you, can be life changing. To my surprise my counsellor was also a person with a sense of humour, she was genuine and herself. I’m not sure what I was expecting..... (perhaps the Freudian stereotype came to mind) but this just strengthened the relationship, knowing that I didn't have to try to be something I am not and I encompass this within my own sessions as a counsellor. 

What will you get with me?

I am friendly, caring, compassionate and I truly do care about your well-being. I will provide a space where you can talk (or talk only a bit if that is what you need) and I will listen and be present with you. I understand that trust can sometimes take a while which is understandable and normal so I will be patient, understanding and non-judgemental when listening to you.

My training to be a counsellor incorporated the Person-Centred Approach which means the sessions are led by you, this could seem daunting and some clients worry that they need to ‘bring’ something to every session. But all it means is that the sessions revolve around what you need at that time. You may not know what that is, which is ok.  Person-Centred is the approach I use as a base for my sessions with clients. When I say ‘base’, this means that I am not restricted to this approach therefore if your situation/you requires a more integrated or structured approach, then this is what happens. Clients often say when they finish a session that they didn’t think they had anything to talk about.  It can be surprising what you do or do not talk about, but it’s important to understand that there is no pressure and some weeks, some things may or may not seem as important which is why it is best to go with what you need at that time. 

Person-centred counselling aims to help you understand yourself so you can know what the best is for you, and that is what I incorporate within my sessions. This involves guiding you to where you want to be by understanding who you are and working together to encourage the freedom to be able to make decisions without all the noise that often surrounds us in day-to-day life.

I may be your counsellor, but I have also been a client, so I understand the reservations, the hesitations, the feelings around initially having counselling and the whole process of counselling. I hope knowing this provides you with reassurance that whilst I can never know exactly what you are going through, I am certainly familiar with all of those normal human feelings that are involved when building a relationship with a counsellor.

Confidentiality is such an important aspect of our work together and I take the responsibility of being a counsellor very seriously. Other than a few necessary safeguarding exceptions to this rule, what we talk about stays between us.

The relationship between counsellor and client is, I feel, the most important and integral part for any personal growth to really happen. That doesn’t mean we have to have some things in common, the one thing we have in common in the sessions is that the sessions are about you. How often in everyday life do you get to sit with someone where it is purely just about you, no conflicting advice from family or friends or well-meaning colleagues/acquaintances. There will be differences between you and me, like there are with every single person you meet however that only makes every client to me, unique.

I will be me. What I mean by that is you will gain a sense of who I am as a person whilst in the sessions, with the aim that you will feel like you are talking to a human being not a robot. What this aims to  do is make you feel more comfortable to be yourself, not the different versions of you that other people may know……. but who is Naturally You.

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