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The Benefits of counselling
Psychotherapy is just a technical word for entering into a dialogue with a trained psychotherapy or counselling professional. The therapist is empathic (can put herself in your shoes) and is there to listen in a professional way. This listening has certain parameters which aid people to examine their life and what is going on for them psychologically.
In therapy, I offer people who are struggling with depression or anxiety and other problems a way forward by looking at what they are going through in a safe (ethically bound) and confidential way. I use methods and techniques that I am highly skilled at, such as ‘the empty chair technique’ or identifying trauma or ‘integration’. I work on attachment issues – how the relationship with our parents or carers has shaped the way we relate to others and ourselves. My counselling aims towards self-regulation: staying ‘grounded’ and ‘sane’, or coping on a day to day basis. I look at the person as a whole being, not just as a set of symptoms. I understand how diet, sleep hygiene and exercise can affect our mental health. In counselling I also observe how physical illness, harm and self-harm, trauma, neglect, and abuse have an effect on our mental wellbeing, even it happened a long time ago.
I work in the ‘here and now’ but I hold in mind what has happened to the person since they were in the womb and how the past has affected what they are going through now.
This is achieved by learning to use introspection: being guided by me to look through a therapeutic lens at ourselves. I teach people to be gentle and compassionate towards themselves and to settle the inner critic who can get very vicious sometimes, especially when we have suffered abuse or neglect.
I work in a relational way which means the focus is on the relationship between us and how I affect the client and the client affects me and how that mirrors how my client is in the world, with all their conflicts and struggles.
I do not diagnose mental illnesses or use labels. However, I have an understanding of the labels used by doctors and can use them to aid my work, as a framework.