Counselling and psychotherapy for couples and individuals

A Space For You

Counselling can provide a space in which you can express and explore whatever is going on for you, knowing that the time will be free of interuptions and that you will be really listened to. Family and friends can give vital support when things are difficult but they may be involved in your situation and unable to have an impartial perspective. Because a counsellor has no other connections with your life they are able to give neutral, experienced help.

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In safe, non-judgemental, confidential and supportive conditions you can be helped to focus on as many of your thoughts, feelings and experiences as you want to. By paying attention to what is going on for you in this way you can begin to see the wider picture of your situation and to become clearer about what is needed.

A Holistic Approach

My approach is to work with all aspects of experience: mental, physical, spiritual and creative, and how these interplay in our lives.  The therapeutic work can unfold  in any direction, towards family, work or relationship issues, the influence of inter-generational patterns, the effect of past or recent trauma, issues around discrimination, to exploring forms of chronic distress such as anxiety, depression, obsessions and phobias.  

 

The counselling aspect of the work can explore ways forward in response to current challenges, by paying attention to your own feelings and experiences and to the inner guidance that can come from deep listening to these.  

 

Psychotherapeutic awareness can help to explore even deeper levels of experience, unconscious aspects and projections, and how old patterns of reaction may be playing themselves out in the present.  Once these are seen more clearly, insights about new and more helpful ways of responding tend to arise naturally.

 

Trusting this process of transformation is less about self-improvement and more about seeing through and letting go of old adapted patterns of reaction which were formed to cope with overwhelming experiences in the past.  The wholeness and inherent OKness of our core being can increasingly be trusted and lived.  There is nothing really to ’do’, it becomes more a process of mindful surrender to what is already unfolding in each person’s life and responding authentically in the present.

Couples and Relationship Therapy

The essence of relationship therapy is in developing effective communication.  Exploring how to communicate authentically and constructively is a valuable life skill to develop and is key to resolving many relationship problems.  Mindful communication  and conflict resolution approaches such as Insight Dialogue and NVC (Non-Violent Communication) offer helpful guidelines for fostering the real listening that can transform relationships.  

 

When each partner is able to express their feelings and needs in a way that doesn’t provoke a defensive response, and to listen carefully to the other person’s needs and feelings, creative resolutions can emerge.  These will be ones that respect and value each person and their differences, and to which each can comfortably subscribe to because everyone is getting enough of their needs met and no-one is gaining at someone else’s expense.

Couple counselling can also provide a safe 'container' in which each partner can be supported to explore their patterns of relationship and emotional responses, the possible origins of these, and to see how these might interact with the other's.  Skilful ways of working with emotions, conflict and repeating patterns of interaction can evolve which can help the relationship to continue to  grow and flourish once counselling has ended.

Kinds of issues worked with 

Through my practice I have assisted people of all ages and from different backgrounds with a wide variety of issues, including:

  • Relationship counselling

  • Family issues

  • Adolescent problems

  • Depression

  • Anxiety, panic attacks and stress

  • Insomnia

  • Phobias

  • Trauma and its emotional and physical effects

  • Obsessive Compulsive Disorder

  • Meditation and the spirituality

  • Bereavement

  • Attachment issues

  • Eating Disorders

  • Identity problems

  • Sexuality

  • Low self-esteem

  • Anger management

  • Work related issues

  • Ethnic and cultural issues

  • Boarding school survivors

This list is not exhaustive - if your particular issue does not seem to fit then I may still be able to help. Call me or send an email to discuss your needs.

Training and Experience

I originally trained and worked with Scottish Marriage Counselling Service and later with Relate in Hereford. I became an independent counsellor in 1996 and was accredited with the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy in 2000. I have worked for a number of Employment Assistance Programmes providing short-term counselling for workplace employees. I worked as the Staff Counsellor for St Michael's Hospice, Herefordshire for some years.

I offer short, medium and long-term psychotherapy. I have a Post-Graduate Diploma in Mindfulness-Based Approaches from the University of Wales and have run group courses in Mindfulness Approaches. I worked as the Staff Counsellor for St Michael's Hospice, Herefordshire for some years.

To find out more or book a session

If you are interested in finding out more about counselling or want to make an appointment please call me or send an email. I will be happy to answer any queries you may have. If you would then like to go ahead with counselling we will arrange an introductory session to work out together whether this is the right kind of counselling for you. After this we would agree a short number of sessions to begin with, which can be extended into a longer-term arrangement if needed.

More information on Counselling can be found on the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy website.