I will work to nurture the person you are or would like to be so you can live a healthier and more fulfilling life
My approach to counselling is person-centred (developed by the Psychologist, Carl Rogers), yet its philosophy is something that I embrace in all areas of my life.
I believe you have the strength and inner resources to heal, grow and change, yet understand that life gets in the way of that, including being in relationships and experiencing life events that have affected your self-esteem, ability to trust, your sense of identity (perhaps you no longer know who you are) or self-belief.
I will relate to you in a warm, genuine, understanding and non-judgemental way, and I trust that these qualities will provide you with the support and freedom to move forward with your life and feel more confident in coping with any future life difficulties.
Coming for the introductory session
Meeting me for the first time (and counselling in general) may cause you some anxiety - which is natural, yet I'll do my utmost to make you feel welcome and at ease. I offer a space where you can be just as you are - free from any outside pressures or expectations.
My aim for the introductory session is that we connect, you feel safe enough to share something of yourself - what's brought you to counselling and what you hope to achieve, and have an understanding of what I'm able to offer you.
If you come to this session as a couple or family, I'll be aiming to connect with both or all of you, and everyone will have a chance to talk.
If we decide to work together - either at this session or after having time to think about it, we'll arrange how we are going to start - for example, the day and time of sessions.
I usually suggest an initial commitment of 6 sessions, and this can often help us decide whether short-term or longer-term counselling is appropriate for you.
Working together in sessions
The counselling sessions are your time, so you decide what we explore together, including setting and working towards any personal goals.
I may offer information and encourage self-care skills, yet I won't provide solutions or make decisions for you. Everyone is different, and only you can know what is best for you.
I will listen at a deep level, yet I'm not a passive listener - I actively engage with you and provide feedback, so you can gain new insights and perspectives and move forward with your life.
Sometimes, it's difficult to put thoughts and feelings into words, and I offer the option of using art and other mediums alongside counselling, including creating a collage, drawing and writing, and using colour, images and objects to express yourself.
Using art and other mediums alongside counselling can be a quick, effective way of helping you to reduce stress, communicate difficult life experiences, get in touch with and express feelings, increase self-awareness and understanding.
If you're coming to counselling as a couple or family, I may suggest activities in the counselling room (such as role play) and between sessions, enabling you to try out and develop a different way of relating to each other.
Working alongside you, my role is to help you make sense of your difficulties, find a way through them and continue to be the best that you can be.
I have had counselling myself and felt the benefits in all areas of my life, and I have also witnessed many other people grow through the experience.
I have a background in providing emotional and mental health support within public and voluntary sector organisations, including Women's Aid, Solent Mind, Bereavement Services, NHS Adult Mental Health and Cruse Bereavement Care.
I have been a counsellor since 2011, and I welcome and work with adults of all ages and genders, including people affected by loss, bereavement, domestic abuse, pregnancy and parenting issues, and mental health issues.
I have both personal insight and professional knowledge of autism (ASD), and I can support individuals on the autism spectrum, and parents of children suspected of or recently diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder.
I am a former volunteer for a county-wide Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS/ME) charity, so I am aware of the physical, social and emotional effects of this condition, as well as the stigma often associated with it.
I enjoy group work, and I have designed and facilitated 8-week bereavement support groups in the past. I currently facilitate a group for women with lived experience of mental health issues, and the group is well-received by members.
Professional registration, qualifications and training
I am an Accredited Professional Registrant of the National Counselling Society, and I adhere to their Code of Ethical Practice.
I regularly consult with a counselling supervisor and undertake continuing professional development in the form of courses, workshops and reading.
I am a Practitioner Member of the Person-Centred Association (TPCA), listed on Psychology Today and the Welldoing Directory.
I have been awarded the following qualifications:
Continuing professional development
I am trained in First Aid and have undertaken continuing professional development in the following areas:
Contact me to book an introductory session or to ask any questions you may have
If you would like to book an introductory session or ask questions before taking that step, please call 07729 193629 or submit the contact form on this website.