What is Counselling?
When we struggle with problems in life or experience difficult feelings, it can help to speak with somebody to process what we are thinking and feeling. Friends and family are often the first port of call but sometimes you may not want to speak to them, whether it’s because you don’t want to burden them or because they are part of the problem.
Counselling is a talking therapy where you can talk to a trained professional in a safe, confidential and non-judgemental way. Your counsellor won’t provide you with the answers but instead will offer you support to enable you to find your own answers and solutions to your questions. A counsellor is there to help you to talk about what is bothering you, to work with you to understand why you feel how you do and how best to manage your experiences.
How does counselling help?
Counselling helps a person to process what is happening and how they are feeling about an experience. Just having a safe, private space and an unbiased person to speak to, is sometimes all that is needed to make changes happen so you can start feeling better and more in control of your life.
These are a few questions you may have regarding counselling, but if you have any others, please don't hesitate to contact me.
Is there a written contract?
There will be a contract for us both to sign, which will basically cover the terms and conditions of our sessions together.
Our contract will give you the client, and me the counsellor, clarity and reassurance of our terms of working together and you will be given enough time to read through the terms, and an opportunity to ask any questions you may have. This will be given to you at our fist meeting.
Where will the counselling sessions take place?
My counselling practice is in High Barnet. We will meet in a comfortable room which will provide you with a private and safe place to talk. It is on the ground floor and has easy access. If you have any mobility requirements please let me know of these when you contact me. Parking is available.
When are appointments available?
Counselling appointments are available Monday - Thursday. Early morning and evening appointments are available.
What will happen when we first meet?
In our first meeting I will carry out an informal assessment. The purpose is to find out what has brought you to counselling and what you wish to get from our work together. It’s also an opportunity for you to ask any questions that you may have. I will also ask you some questions about your personal history and current situation, as well as your family background.
From this conversation, I will be able to decide whether I can help you and even more importantly, you can decide if you think you will be comfortable in meeting with me.
If we both feel counselling will be beneficial, I will give you copies of my terms and conditions and my privacy statement. We can either go through these in the meeting or you can take them home and read them. After the initial assessment we will then agree on a convenient time to meet each week.
We will carry on speaking together regarding your thoughts and feelings and then work together to find the cause of these feelings and look at ways to manage or move forward from them. The sessions will go at your pace and we will focus on what you wish to bring to each session to work on.
How often do I need to attend counselling sessions and how many appointments will I need?
Clients typically attend weekly to ensure momentum can be built and progress made. It is hard to say how many sessions you will need as everyone is different. However, our work will be reviewed on a regular basis to ensure it continues to meet your needs and, if required, identify new areas which you wish to focus on, or whether we can begin to work towards an ending.
Can a friend or family member come with me?
I only see clients individually and unfortunately there is not a waiting room.
Is my information kept securely?
Client confidentiality is taken very seriously. Please see my Privacy statement which will be given to you in our first session.
Are you a member of a professional body?
I am a registered member of the BACP (British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapies). The BACP is a professional body and a registered charity that sets standards for therapeutic practice and provides information for therapists, clients of therapy, and the public. I also follow the BACP Ethical Framework for Good Practice in Counselling and Psychotherapy. For more information on the BACP please visit their website or download there Ethical Framework from here.
What qualifications do you have?
I hold both a Diploma in Counselling and a Foundation Degree in Counselling which is accredited by the BACP.