Telephone: 02920 228040 |firstname.lastname@example.org
Do you need someone to listen to you and help you find a way forward? I am a fully qualified CBT counsellor offering a relaxed, down to earth, safe and confidential setting to talk about whatever issues you may wish to bring to counselling.
£50 for a full hour for individuals.
Reduced fee sometimes negotiable for low income etc.
Cancellation fee applies.
I work with a full range of issues, including anxiety, depression, low self-esteem, relationship issues, stress, panic disorders, phobias, OCD, eating disorders, anger and many other areas. Sometimes people think that counselling is just for those times when someone is experiencing a crisis, or if they have a 'label' or mental health condition attached to them - in fact you are welcome to come to counselling for whatever you may need to talk about, and I will listen and help you to find whatever direction or goal you are seeking.
Many clients come to counselling as they are experiencing a change in life direction and just need to talk things through, to find where they want to be. I provide a confidential and non-judgemental environment where you are free to talk about whatever is on your mind.
Coming to counselling is different from talking to family or friends as I will not be trying to give you my opinion, or steer you in the 'right' direction, but will be listening fully to you, getting into your world with you, to understand how you feel and what you are thinking.
Together we can then work out what you may need to do to feel differently, which may include working on areas such as altering unhelpful thinking patterns, behaviour, or deep-rooted beliefs. Any change is your own choice and I am always guided by what you wish. I don't impose models of therapy on to you (and I do not bombard you with theories and technical talk!), but instead I allow the models to adapt to suit yourself, as each person has their own individual needs.
I specialise in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) which is a particularly effective therapy for making change. CBT looks at the connections between thoughts, feelings, physical symptoms and behaviour - very often it is not the situation itself which is the cause of distress, but the way we think about it. By examining our thoughts we can understand what obstacles may be in the way, preventing us from moving forward. Often, by looking at the way we have dealt with past experiences we can discover where we may be 'held back' and how it is affecting the present. CBT techniques can then enable you to challenge unhelpful or negative thoughts and behaviours, so that you may move forward more positively, to where you want to be.
A simple example of how CBT can be effective is to look at two motorists both stuck in the same traffic jam. One motorist feels very stressed, is fidgety and agitated, becomes sweaty and thinks, "I'm not going to get to meet my girlfriend on time - she'll be angry - she may leave me - I won't ever maintain a good relationship." His thoughts are tapping into past experiences and are also becoming 'distorted' and catastrophic - there is no evidence that this girlfriend will be angry or leave him or that he will never maintain a relationship.
These thoughts can be examined and challenged using CBT techniques so that he can come to new, more helpful ways of thinking. The other motorist is calm, realises that there is nothing he can do to get out of the traffic jam, but that he can make the most of the situation he is in. He can listen to the radio or a CD, take some time to think, talk to his passenger, maybe even read (only if the traffic is halted of course!) thereby finding positives within the situation which further enable him to cope more effectively. The situation is the same for both drivers, but they display two very different reactions. The traffic will flow again and they will each get to their destinations - one in a calm frame of mind, the other flustered.
If I was looking for a counsellor I would want to know a little about them, so here is a little about myself: I am married and have three grown up children, and young grandchildren. In the past I have had many pets often all at once, including 5 cats and 5 rabbits! I now just have the one cat. I love the coast, the woods, wildlife, the sun and the sky, photography, rock music, and have a great sense of natural spirituality, as in the connection we have with nature. I also have a great sense of fun! I am enthusiastic, caring and sensitive to others' needs. I live simply, am non-materialistic, and I have found my own pathway with regards to being a counsellor, which I love with a passion. I have been in private practice for over ten years, and have been counselling for over twelve years in total.
My aim is for you to feel as comfortable as possible within the counselling setting - if you feel comfortable with me then you are more able to fully express yourself, which is vital for you to achieve what you need. The room I use is small and comfortable, with settees and cushions, not at all clinical! I am warm and friendly whilst professional and committed to my work with a passion.
If you wish to book in I can usually offer you a first appointment within a few days, there is no waiting list and this means that you can start feeling differently sooner rather than later. A first appointment usually takes just over an hour (but I only charge for the hour) and it's often helpful to bring some written notes with you about your thoughts and feelings, and whatever you wish to discuss. It's not essential to do so, but it can help clients to focus and to ensure nothing is left out. I will provide handouts and worksheets etc as appropriate.
It's usually best to book weekly sessions if you can, especially at first, to ensure progress is maintained. Longer sessions can also be arranged, if required, for one and a half hours or two hours. You are welcome to have as many sessions as you need - I do not limit numbers of sessions, as everyone works at their own pace and it's important that you feel you have the time needed to cover whatever you wish to discuss.
I am based within the Mindfulness and Wellbeing Centre in Cowbridge Road East, Canton, Cardiff, which is a main route through Cardiff and on a bus route.
I look forward to meeting you and helping you to achieve whatever it is that will make a difference in your life.
Training, qualifications & experience
I hold the Post Graduate Diploma in Therapeutic Counselling (DipCouns), specialising in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy. The Diploma is accredited by the BACP and was attained at University of Wales, Newport in 2005.
I also have a BSc (Hons) Psychology degree, attained in 2001.
I am a registered member of the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP).
I have been in private practice for over 10 years.
Prior to private practice, I have 2 years experience of being a volunteer counsellor at Women in Mind, with clients with mental health issues. This includes issues such as depression, anxiety, low self-esteem, eating disorders, sexual problems, trauma, abuse, relationship difficulties and so on. I also have experience of counselling at Inroads, which is a local street drugs project. I am currently in private practice - having reached my goal!
I work with a vast range of client issues - including the issues listed above. Sometimes clients worry that their issues are not 'important enough' to attend counselling - I would like to assure you that if there is there anything troubling you that you would like to explore, then it is worthwhile attending counselling. By learning to understand yourself more fully, you are more able to make fulfilling choices with your life, whatever those choices may be. Sometimes people just need to feel able to safely explore whatever is on their mind - sometimes just hearing yourself saying the words our loud to another person can be helpful in itself. In counselling, I can help you to explore these thoughts further and aid self-understanding, thereby helping you to reach wherever you want to be.
I am a registered member of the BACP.
Please feel free to email or telephone - if I am unable to take your call please leave an answerphone message, or call back in the evening.
Normal availability is Tuesday-Friday, in the afternoons. Occasionally, later appointments can be arranged.