What Is Counselling?
Counselling offers you a safe place to talk and be heard. It is about taking a reflective journey with the counsellor alongside you, with the aim of enhancing your life by making sense of what has happened to you or where things are going wrong for you.
It is a collaborative process that can help you to move from a place in which you are struggling with certain elements of your life to a place where your life is closer to being the best it can be for you.
Who Is The Right Counsellor For Me?
Not every style or counselling approach suits everyone. One size does not fit all.
I'd encourage you to contact a few counsellors and at lest have an initial chat or session with them to have something to compare.
Research proves a good relationship between the client and counsellor creates a safe, trusting environment. This is the single most important element for therapy to be successful. I am always happy to offer an initial appointment for you to see if I am the right counsellor for you.
Who Has Counselling?
Anyone. The main thing is having the motivation and curiosity to look within, with the support of your counsellor, to better understand your thoughts, feelings and responses.
A 2014 survey found that close to 37% of the population had used counselling to successfully help them cope with their difficulties.
What Conditions Can it Help?
Counselling can usually help most people. The main thing is having the motivation to explore yourself. There may be some issues more helpfully dealt with by specialist organisations, e.g. active substance dependency or a severe and enduring mental health diagnosis to name just a couple. If I feel that your needs would be better served with a specialist organisation, then I would discuss this with you in the initial session.
What can I expect from an initial session?
An initial session is an exploration of who you are and what you would like to discuss or work on in future sessions. It is usually a time to see if you are comfortable working with me. There are usually discussions about what your expectations are/ would be of the process, you can ask as many questions about this as you like. Then, if you are comfortable, we contract for however many sessions we both think is appropriate in order to carry out the work you have identified. We would also talk about confidentiality, supervision and professional ethics and boundaries.
This is also the time to talk about costs and concessions.
What about confidentiality?
Under normal circumstances, your right to confidentiality will be completely respected. You need to be aware that, like all therapists I discuss my work with a qualified supervisor. My supervisor is bound by the same requirements for confidentiality. The only time I would consider breaking confidentiality is if I am concerned about your, or other peoples', safety. In such cases, I would always let you know beforehand that I intended to contact the relevant people.
How much is this going to cost me?
I usually charge ₤50 per 50 minute session, and sometimes have a few concessionary places open. If you are on a low income, please ask about availability of these at first contact.
I know that people's incomes can go up as well as down, should this happen whilst in therapy please do talk about it. We may be able to readjust arrangements to suit your changing circumstances.
Payment can be made by cash or bank transfer and is due before your appointment.
How long will I need to come for?
The amount of time spent in therapy depends on several factors, the most important being the nature of the difficulty bringing you to counselling. At the initial consultation, we can discuss whether it would be more appropriate to have short term, solution focused work or more longer term therapy.
What if I can't make an appointment?
Please call to cancel as soon as possible. If I can reasonably offer an alternative within the same week, there will be no additional charge.
If you cancel within 24 hours of your scheduled appointment, unfortunately I will have to charge for a missed appointment.
How does therapy end?
Usually we decide on that together, sometimes even building that into the initial contract if we decide short term work is more suited to your needs.
When you are satisfied that you have gone as far as you want to for now, we have an ending session to celebrate all your achievements, look at "what next" for you and what the professional relationship has meant for both of us.