what is psychotherapy & counselling?
Psychotherapy is the use of psychological methods to help a person notice and bring into awareness unhelpful patterns in their life that were formed in their childhood and to help change those behaviours and transactions with people. Counselling is used to help people come to terms with any problems they are facing, with the ultimate aim of overcoming them. Both are reflective spaces for personal development. Therapy can help you become more self aware and have the capability to to think and feel emotions with clarity and understanding.
why choose therapy?
It may seem a strange concept - going to a stranger each week and talking about your inner most thoughts, past and hopes for the future. How and why does it work? It seems a mysterious process but there is plenty of research to show that psychotherapy and counselling works. Being able to bring overwhelming experiences into awareness makes them better able to be processed and then to be lived with. It is like taking the experience out of a box, recognising the pain, confusion, sadness and then filing it away - knowing it will always be there but its been looked at, talked about and dealt with. The experiences that you have spent so long defending against can be processed, integrated and adapted to through tapping into your resilience with the support of the therapist. Therapists do not know all the answers neither will they tell you what to do, but by creating a collaborative process together less destructive habits and healthier relationships can be formed from a role modelling of this in the therapy room that can be expanded into the 'real world'.
about Transactional Analysis
My training has predominately been in Transactional Analysis which is one of the most widely recognised modalities of psychotherapy aimed at promoting personal growth and change. It was devised by Dr Eric Berne in the 1950s with a focus on a new psychological model that put the client centre stage in their recovery and took away past psycho-babble language to make it easier to understand. It is a theory of personality and communication that helps us to understand who we are and how we came to be the person we are. Transactional Analysis is a therapeutic model for positive change and personal growth. In simple terms it is the study of how people take on certain patterns of behaviors, unconsciously from their early caretakers or authority figures and then continue to play them out in their adult lives. It is a model for people to use to work towards ‘autonomy’, a place from where they can choose to live the way they want to and not to be still acting as if they are controlled by past events or messages.
There are 3 philosophical underpinnings of Transactional Analysis and these are that everyone can think, all people can change and everybody is ok. The therapy is a contractual method with open communication. Everybody is born with the capacity to love; hate is a learnt behaviour. Everybody is responsible for their own thinking and change. It is not the therapists job to change people but to help identify where they want to change.
If there are certain unhealthy ways of behaving, thinking or feeling in your life, together we will look at exploring those further to see what it is you may want to update how you do things, see things or feel about particular issues. The focus in sessions is you and what you would like to gain from therapy and for this reason, therapy is tailored to your needs and presenting issues.
walking & talking
I also offer Walking & Talking as depression and anxiety can often narrow our world as we internalise our feelings. Getting outside into the natural world can help us to see things from a different perspective. Walking increases blood flow to the brain and helps to release hormones that trigger a positive feeling in the body, thereby reducing stress and helping us to focus and tackle underlying issues. My therapy room is surrounded by beautiful countryside so whether you live in a city, town or village just being in this environment can lower stress levels and feel like a get away from busy every day life. Often clients prefer Walk & Talk sessions rather than being in the therapy room or there can also be a mix of the two.