What is counselling?
Counselling is a 'talking therapy', and it offers a safe and confidential setting where you can explore and understand what may be troubling you, and make choices and changes that you want to make.
The Counsellor will aim to build a solid relationship with you, and rather than offer opinions or give advice, they will listen in a deeply understanding way, and without judgement or criticism.
Counselling is about enabling you to find your strengths and solutions for moving forward, so it does require a level of commitment and openness.
There are different forms of counselling, yet the aim or purpose is often the same, such as enabling you to enhance your life, your relationships with others, and overall sense of wellbeing.
Why do people come for counselling?
There are many reasons why people come for counselling, yet perhaps the most important one is that you feel you need it. If something is bothering you, it can be helpful to talk to someone who will listen with a view to valuing and understanding your experience.
How do I know if you are a qualified Counsellor?
I am listed on a register that has been accredited by the Professional Standards Authority, and only Counsellors that have been vetted and approved are on this register. You can view my details on the National Counselling Society website.
Are you a member of a professional body?
I am a registrant member of the National Counselling Society (NCS), and I work within their Code of Ethics. I am also subject to their complaints procedure currently in force.
How do I know if you are the right Counsellor for me?
An introductory appointment provides an opportunity to establish if we could work well together. At this same appointment, we will discuss your reasons for seeking counselling and any personal aims.
If either of us decide that I am not the right Counsellor for you, I can offer details of others, or you can browse the established Counsellor sites, such as the Counselling Directory or Welldoing Directory.
What happens in an individual counselling session?
We will start where you want to start, and I provide a safe and supportive relationship where you can be yourself, talk in an open and honest way, feel heard and understood.
At times I will challenge what I hear to enable you to reflect, or see things in a different way, yet this will always come from a place of support and genuineness, rather than criticism, judgement or blame.
As a Person-Centred Counsellor, I place an emphasis on feelings and emotions (I trust that addressing feelings and emotions leads to healing and change), and personal development.
Exploring feelings and emotions can be difficult, yet there are many creative ways of doing this, such as through the use of art materials, photos, writing, and even referring to images or metaphors.
How do you work with couples and families?
I encourage an environment where you can talk, observe, and listen to one another. As the Counsellor, I will listen, respect and respond to everyone's experience, as opposed to 'take sides'.
At the start of each session, everyone will have the opportunity to say what they would like to talk about, and an agenda will be set from this.
To aid communication, I may take on the role of mediator/translator, comment on what is happening in the counselling room, and offer the opportunity to practise the roles of ‘speaker’ and ‘listener’.
My counselling areas include communication difficulties, trust issues, mental health issues, disability, bereavement and loss, separation and divorce.
What are your counselling fees?
Appointments are charged at £40 per hour for individuals, £50 per hour and a half for couples, and £60 per hour and a half for families (3-4 people in close relationships). I can offer a concessionary rate if finances are a concern for you, and you are welcome to enquire about this.
How many sessions will I need?
The number of sessions varies from person-to-person, and may depend on the nature of the counselling. I always recommend 6 sessions to begin with, as this can enable us to establish the effectiveness of our work together. All counselling is reviewed on a regular basis.