How I Can Help

Counselling and psychotherapy

Counselling and psychotherapy often mystify people and I am often asked what the difference is between the two terms. While there are no defined differences between counselling and psychotherapy, I like to explain the difference in terms of the ‘depth’ of work done, the degree to which we look back into a person’s life and make connections to explain a current suffering.

With counselling, the need of the client may be to explore a current difficulty and get assistance with clarifying and understanding what they need to do for themselves to emerge from this time of disturbance, or trouble. With psychotherapy, there may not be a current difficulty that is consuming a person’s mental and emotional energy. There may be just a low mood, a sense of despair, a pattern in relationships, a sense of meaninglessness, a loss of vibrancy, or a sense of life not being what it should be. People may describe feeling ‘stuck’, even if to others they appear successful and happy. People may describe feeling ‘false’, like no-one really knows them, apart from the person they portray themselves to be. These difficulties may necessitate talking about how life has been for this person and what it is they have ‘carried’ along the way, in terms of beliefs about themselves, other people and life. They may need to explore these things and re-evaluate them, to be more the person they truly are. With this, they are better equipped to address their current struggles and move forward.

Short-term or long-term

It is important to know that both counselling and psychotherapy are on offer with me. I believe strongly that the client is the expert. The client is the one who lives inside the self and has had the experiences. They know when something resonates with them in a therapy session. They know what they can and cannot cope with. They know the areas and issues that need to be addressed. I believe that there is a natural predisposition towards health in everyone. People just need to gain a confidence in listening to what their body, mind and emotions are telling them. This may be something they have never learned how to do. I listen to what the client brings to me and their goals. This may be short-term counselling, or a more processing through psychotherapy. The client determines what happens and for how long. I don’t believe that doors of a person’s life should be pushed open, if the person does not themselves open them. Should a client bring up an issue, we discuss how ready and open they feel to exploring it further. The client is best equipped to know what the implications will be for them of entering that exploration, once the opportunity to discuss the options is given.

Areas of expertise

For seventeen years now, I have been working with the following difficulties:

  • Depression
  • Recovery from childhood sexual abuse and trauma
  • Rape recovery
  • Adult trauma recovery
  • Relationship difficulties
  • Stress and anxiety
  • Bullying
  • Self-esteem and identity issues
  • Bullying in various contexts (workplace, home, school, friendships)
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