My Approach

My aim is to help you look to at your issues in an objective way and to develop a therapeutic relationship where you feel able to freely explore thoughts and feelings without fear of being judged.

I have been trained in a number of therapies and I have learned that a one-size-fits all approach is less effective. I use an integrated approach that draws on the most useful methods for your specific needs. This is known as Integrative Counselling and utilises techniques from the most recent evidence-based psychotherapies.

Integrative Counselling

Counselling helps you to move forward with your life and aims to help you gain perspective on what is troubling you. It provides you with neutral, safe and confidential space to talk about your life and anything that may be confusing, painful or uncomfortable.

Counselling allows you to talk with someone who is trained to listen attentively and to help you improve things and who has no other agenda than a genuine desire to help you. As a counsellor I am is specifically trained to work with people who are struggling with a psychological or emotional difficulty and understand that this can sometimes be frightening and lonely. I work to understand you from your point of view and to see the world through your eyes. I also look beyond the presenting problem to possible underlying causes.

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT)

In CBT, we work together and take an approach focused on actions. This is based on the idea that our unwanted thoughts, feelings, emotions and behaviours are maintained by what we believe about ourselves, others and the world around us. We look at how these unhelpful beliefs were created, how they are maintained and how they can negatively impact life today.

By identifying and then changing these unhelpful beliefs, you can expect to gain a deeper understanding of your thoughts, manage your emotions and your relationships, achieve your goals and be more fulfilled.

CBT is supported by clinical research and substantial evidence base supporting its effectiveness. It is used extensively by the NHS and recommended by NICE (National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence), for many emotional and psychological problems, including treatment for anxiety disorders, stress and depression.

Studies have shown that CBT helps around 70-80% of people. If you can accept that although life events clearly have an influence, it is not the event itself that disturbs you, but what you tell yourself about it that disturbs you, then you are more likely to be in that group. Not only can CBT provide huge relief, it is often instrumental in helping you regain control and manage your life as you wish to.

Rational Emotive Behavioural Therapy REBT

Psychology Today describes Rational Emotive Behaviour Therapy (REBT) as unique among therapies as it differentiates between self destructive, inappropriate negative emotions versus helpful, appropriate ones. Anxiety, depression, anger and shame are examples of the former and concern sadness remorse and regret of the second. It presents an elegant solution to the self esteem problem by teaching unconditional self acceptance. It also addresses the philosophical basis of emotional disturbance which makes it more powerful.

“People have motives and thoughts of which they are unaware.”

Albert Ellis

Developed by Albert Ellis, a psychologist, the model has, at its heart, the premise from the Stoic philosopher Epictetus (AD 75) that people are not disturbed by events … but the view they hold about them.

Acceptance Commitment Therapy ACT

The principal goal of ACT is to help you lead a more rewarding life even in the presence of undesirable thoughts, emotions and sensations. It places at the forefront of personal change and development the importance of recognising your values in all areas of your life.

“Those who have a ‘why’ to live, can bear with almost any ‘how’.”

Victor E Frankl

Fundamentally it’s ethos is, you can achieve your goals, manage any distressing thoughts and emotions if you understand and refer to your values as your guide. It looks at how people often strive to avoid certain sensations, these strategies can then become the problem and ultimately affect whether you achieve your goals.

Schema Therapy

Is an innovative therapy bridging the gap between the ‘here and now’ approach of CBT with the impact of how having unmet needs from your past now effects you in the present. It is designed to help acknowledge and then change some of the longstanding and deep rooted patterns of thinking and acting which can become self limiting and self destructive. If you find yourself thinking, “I’ve always been like that,” “Something bad is going to happen,” “I’m not good enough,” “People don’t care about me,” then this may indicate a repeating theme throughout your life, we identify, accept and together create a strategy to address these schemas.

“I am not what happened to me. I am what I chose to become”

Carl Jung

Compassion Focused Therapy CFT

This was developed by Dr. Paul Gilbert, a psychologist, who believed that compassion (for both self and other focused) could be the key to relieving intrusive feelings of shame and self criticism. He views compassion as “a sensitivity to the suffering and distress of self and others with a deep commitment to relieve and prevent it. A capacity to turn towards suffering rather than away from it.”

“The curious paradox is that when I accept myself just as I am, then I can change.”

Carl Rogers

CFT draws from a range of disciplines, including evolutionary psychology, biology, neuroscience, and Buddhist eastern philosophy. It takes the view that some emotion states can be neglected while others flourish leading to anxiety, shame and depression, ultimately, “burn out.”