For some people, it is important to understand the past, while others prefer to work in a solution-focused way focusing on the present. I take an integrative approach to therapy, which allows a flexible treatment based on your individual needs.
I have been counselling using a variety of approaches since 2005, working with individuals, groups and couples to help them gain insight and work towards real-world change.
When clients are looking for practical change, to move on from depression or crippling social anxiety, I use a more directive approach, such as cognitive and behavioural therapy (CBT). My main aim is to create a trusting empathetic relationship and find out what works well for you.
Experience and Training
I have a proven track record of working with issues like depression and anxiety, as well as low self-esteem, relationship difficulties, assertiveness, trauma, stress and life transitions. I work full-time as a therapist in both NHS-funded and private settings.
I'm a registered and accredited member of the BACP, which is the leading professional accrediting body for counselling and psychotherapy in the UK. I'm also a registered member of FDAP, which is the leading governing body for addiction professionals in the UK.
My training is ongoing; I hold an MSc in Addiction Psychology and Counselling from London South Bank University and diplomas in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy and Hypnotherapy. I did my counselling certificate training at the University of London (Goldsmiths College).
Each year I undertake continuous professional development to keep my practice up to date and to maintain my accreditation with the BACP.
Person-Centred Therapy - The Basics!
What is it?
Person-centred therapy (PCT) is a school of counselling which started with the renowned American psychologist Carl Rogers in the 1940’s.
It’s also sometimes called Rogerian Counselling, Client-Centred Counselling, or Humanistic Counselling. It is one of the three key schools or modalities of psychotherapy.
Carl Rogers believed that people have the resources within themselves to drive personal progress and development. He called this idea ‘self-actualising’. He was also convinced that individuals, not therapists, are best placed to know and heal themselves. He rejected the idea that therapists were the all-knowing experts. Instead, he focused on a relationship of equals, which was built on trust, honesty, and congruence.
The client and the therapist work together to build a warm, trusting therapeutic relationship where the client remains responsible for the progress, instead of handing over power to the therapist.
Rogers thought that his client's concept of self was tremendously important,
In a similar way to Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT), Rogers felt that, although the past may have useful information and help clients to understand where difficulties may come from, it was more important to focus on the present and the future.
What is most important in the Rogerian approach is the quality of the relationship between the therapist and the client. It needs to be non-judgemental, warm, and trusting. The core concept in this kind of counselling is that the therapist takes a perspective of unconditional positive regard towards the client.
To the extent that there are techniques in Rogerian counselling, they are based around ways of building a strong therapeutic relationship, often called a therapeutic alliance. Counselling in this approach means active listening, non-judgemental acceptance of the client, and reflecting back and summarising what the therapist has heard in order to clarify and allow the client to hear what was previously a disconnected set of thoughts.
On a personal note, I am often astonished at the power of hearing your own words spoken back to you. This can lead either to the client rejecting what they have just heard back, or to a feeling of real validation and a clarification of what they think.
This process can be a really powerful force for change. I tend to use PCT in the early part of my work with clients, as it is so good for building trust and helping to develop a good working relationship.