Sometimes people turn to counselling after a traumatic event, such as a bereavement, divorce or redundancy. Often, however, people find themselves struggling for less clear-cut reasons. They may suffer from persistent anxiety or depression, or feel stuck or lost without knowing why. They may wonder why they repeatedly end up in unhealthy relationships, or feel bullied at work, or have intimacy issues. Such problems can be made worse by feelings of shame, guilt or anger, which they might feel unable to share with their loved ones.
Professional counselling can help. Talking to someone who is separate from your day-to-day life can allow you to explore whatever is causing you distress in a confidential, non-judgemental environment. It offers a space to feel heard, and can help you to understand and manage your feelings.
Finding the right counsellor can seem like a daunting prospect, and it’s important that you feel comfortable with your counsellor and that you are able to trust and confide in them.
I am an experienced psychodynamic counsellor offering one-to-one counselling to adults at my practice room in Harpenden. I hope that this website will give you a sense of how I work and how I would be able to help you.
If you would like to know more, or wish to arrange an initial consultation with me, please do get in touch either by phone on 07732 048 850, by email at email@example.com or via the Contact Me page of this website.
I know how important it is to feel that your counsellor ‘gets’ you, and is able to bear anything you wish to share with them. My counselling style is approachable, empathic and insightful. I believe the counsellor/client relationship should be a creative partnership in which we work together to understand why you feel the way you do, to explore how you could change and, in time, to accept or mourn for those things which cannot be changed.
As your counsellor, my role is not to give you advice or tell you what I think you should do, nor is it simply to offer sympathy or reassurance. It is to help you to understand what has made you the person you are, to recognise how your past experiences have shaped you, and explore how this has affected your way of relating to others. I would do this by encouraging you to talk about your feelings, your relationships, your memories, and perhaps your dreams. There is nothing that cannot be talked about in counselling, and sometimes profound insights can come from seemingly trivial memories or incidents.
Whatever you tell me, I will listen carefully and respond thoughtfully. I might offer interpretations, make observations, or suggest links with other experiences you have described. If I think it will be beneficial to the work, I might gently challenge something you have said, or sometimes I might say nothing and sit in silence with you. If managed sensitively, silence can be a creative opportunity to think and reflect together.
Counselling is a journey which is unique to every client. As counsellor it is my role to be with you on that journey, not to tell you what your destination should be or which route to take.
"You have helped me see through some very dark times, helped me grow in confidence, helped me see that I can be wrong and that I don't need to be perfect, that just being me is OK. You have helped me realise asking for help is ok and you have helped me grow as a person." - Client's words
I have completed a rigorous five-year training through the Counselling Foundation, consisting of Foundation Certificate, Diploma and Advanced Diploma in Psychodynamic Counselling. This training programme is accredited by the British Association of Counsellors and Psychotherapists (BACP).
A vital part of my training has been to undergo psychotherapy myself, to better understand my own unconscious processes and develop my self-awareness. I know how it feels to be a client, and that it is not easy to consider sharing your private thoughts and feelings with a stranger, and I am always mindful of your need to feel safe enough to do so with me.
In addition to my private practice, I see clients at a charitable counselling agency, where I also assess new clients for suitability for therapy. I have also worked as a grief counsellor for a bereavement charity.
As a registered member of the BACP I am bound by its Ethical Framework, am committed to ongoing professional development, and receive regular clinical supervision.