Embarking on psychological therapy can be a daunting prospect. Each person brings their own unique experiences and difficulties to therapy, as such each person’s therapy is unique and deeply personal. To enable difficulties to be explored requires the development of a safe therapeutic relationship, which I seek to facilitate by listening, understanding and working at your pace. I work using a number of different psychological approaches and integrate these to best suit each person’s needs:
- Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing (EMDR)
- Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT)
- Cognitive Analytic Therapy (CAT)
My therapeutic style is open and collaborative, recognising that we both bring our own expertise and experiences into our shared therapeutic space. I usually work in a sequence of stages: Initial Consultation, Understanding, Working Through and Ending.
This is a single session during which we discuss your reasons for seeking psychological support, the therapeutic goals you would like to achieve and I will be able to answer any questions you might have. The aim of this meeting is to help you decide whether you feel you would like to work with me. It also allows me to think about whether the psychological therapy I can offer is likely to benefit you.
These (usually up to 3) sessions are designed to enable us to gain a thorough understanding of the issues that have brought you to therapy, to begin to get to know your life history and significant experiences. The aim is for us to to develop a good understanding of how the difficulties you are experiencing tend to show up in your life, how they may have developed and what keeps them going. We will also take time to think about what you would like to be different, or perhaps simply understand better. This allows us to choose the approach(es) most likely to help you towards your therapeutic goals.
Having developed a good understanding of the issues and therapeutic goals, this stage is focused on ‘working through’ the issues that brought you to therapy. This stage can look very different for different people. For some it may involve a deeper exploration of past events and/or expression of long-held or avoided emotions. For others, it could be examining and adjusting unhelpful patterns of behaviour. Some people may work on testing out new strategies to help manage day to day events, and yet others may work to processes traumatic memories that up until now, have been left unprocessed and are causing distress in the present.
The ending of psychological therapy is an important stage in the therapeutic process and aims to allow for time to reflect on what we have achieved and to process feelings associated with the ending of our work together.