How I Work

My practice is deeply rooted in the Person Centred Approach.  This means I place great value on connection, acceptance, authenticity and empathy.  I use great care to ensure that I always work confidentially and ethically – as a member of the BACP I work under the BACP Ethical Framework and you can expect me to behave reliably and professionally at all times.  At our first session I will give you all the information you need to understand what you can expect of me.

What You Can Expect From Me

What is most important in counselling is to find a person with whom you can build a trusting relationship.  Counselling with me moves at your pace, and it will always be your choice to decide what we talk about in any session.  Sometimes people imagine that to be “ready” for therapy you need to be feeling strong enough to instantly share your most difficult experiences with a stranger.  I do not believe this is the case for everyone.  I believe in giving each of my clients the time and space to explore things in a way which feels useful, safe and under their control.

Person Centred Therapy is often described as “non-directive”.  This means that I will not tell you how I think you should do, what you should feel or what you should do differently.  I am not here to “fix” you.  I am not here to diagnose you.  I believe that there are many things in the world which are far more powerful than simply giving someone my advice.  Solutions to life’s problems are so much more successful if they come from the heart. For that reason, I aim to help you reach your own conclusions. This does not mean I will be a passive presence who merely nods along while you talk.  I will be as engaged in the process as you are, but I take my lead from you.   I may ask questions, or share my impressions of what you are telling me.  I won’t send you away with homework tasks or lists to fill in.  Ultimately I believe that the way forward is yours alone, and the work of therapy is for us to work together to help you find it.

About Person Centred Therapy

The Person Centred Approach was developed in the 1950s and 1960s by Carl Rogers, and is based on the belief that all human beings have a built in capacity for healing, growth and progress.  I was drawn to this therapeutic approach because it chimed with my sense of humanity: that struggle and pain are real aspects of life, but also that everyone has the ability to develop and change.  Person Centred Therapists believe that the exploration of our pain and struggle with a trusted therapist can unlock our ability to move on in a direction which feels positive for us. I love the analogy of the green shoot of a plant, gradually growing towards the sunlight.

From an outside perspective, person centred therapy may simply look like a conversation between two people.  The reality for both client and therapist, however, is something very different.  Person Centred Therapists are trained to really listen, and to seek to understand their clients’ lives as if they were their own.  The therapist is not trying to analyse, or change their client, but they seek to provide a space in which the client feels truly understood and accepted.  It is that understanding, and connection which allows clients to explore themselves at a profound level, sort through their pain or uncertainty and develop their ability to grow, change or be content. 

Supervision

Like all counsellors, I have regular supervision with another therapist to support me in my work with clients.  I will tell you more about this when we meet. I also commit to regular professional development and training. My work is one of permanent reflection and improvement.