I work with a wide variety of conditions, both long-standing and recently onset. Typical presenting issues are migration grief, stress, anxiety, relationship problems, anger-management, and depression. Often several issues will be present at the same time.
I am able to work with many conditions; however, a psychologist or psychiatrist may be more appropriate for psychosis, bi-polar disorder, personality disorders, schizophrenia and serious drug addiction and eating disorders. A proper referral to a specialist can be provided if necessary.
Similarly, if you wish to consider medication, or are seeking a medical diagnosis or a medical report, then an appointment with a psychiatrist would be more appropriate. Please consult local listings.
Specific Psychological Conditions for Counseling
On the right hand side you will find a list of conditions that I specialize in. This list is not comprehensive, so please contact me with your specific requirements to see if I am able to help.
Anxiety is a normal response to threatening situations. But anxious feelings can also produce unpleasant side-effects of sweating, tension, panic and avoidant behavior. If left untreated, anxiety can cause wider difficulties in relationships, at work, and in general mood levels. Psychotherapy and Counseling can help by exploring the root causes of anxiety and the factors that maintain anxiety problems. What is Anxiety Counseling & Psychotherapy? Counseling and Psychotherapy can be instrumental in tackling the root cause of anxiety and working on ways of managing it. Therapy helps you explore the causes of stress, including those created by work, family, and past experiences. It may be important to understand what you are doing to maintain high stress levels - for example some behaviors serve to exacerbate stress. I will work with you to develop stress-reduction techniques and to promote psychologically healthier patterns of living. What are the Benefits of Anxiety Counseling? • Opportunity to explore the underlying causes of your stress and anxiety. • Examine the thoughts, feelings and behaviors that contribute to your high stress levels. • Gain self-understanding and insight, including identifying stress triggers. • Develop tailor-made coping strategies to manage stressful situations. • Learn techniques and tools that are effective for you for the long-run.
Depression affects one in six of us. Common symptoms include lack of motivation, difficulties in concentration, pessimism, sleep disturbances, irritability, crying, suicidal thoughts, social withdrawal, changes in appetite, loss of sex drive and lack of enthusiasm/pleasure. Depression often has knock-on effects in personal and professional relationships. What is Depression Counseling & Psychotherapy? Depression Counseling Treatment will be tailored to your individual symptoms. Typically, I help you explore the root causes of depression and low mood. I may also incorporate client-center therapy techniques which focus on lifting the maintaining cycles of depression and low mood. If you wish to combine counseling/therapy with an anti-depressant, I can refer you to a psychiatrist. Issues for Depression Counseling • Low Mood • Postnatal depression (PND) • Suicidal Thoughts • Loss of Desire • Changes in Appetite • Social Withdrawal • Grief/loss • Redundancy What are the Benefits of Depression Counseling? • Explore the underlying causes of your depression. • Examine thoughts, feelings and behaviors that contribute to low mood. • Develop tailor-made coping strategies to manage low moods. • Learn techniques and tools that are effective for you for the long-run.
Relationships can be a great source of fulfillment. When they are problematic we feel pain, disappointment, guilt, rejection or loneliness. If you are suffering because of Relationship problems, Counseling or Psychotherapy can help to show you healthier patterns of relating. What is Relationship Counseling & Psychotherapy? Counseling and Psychotherapy provides a safe and objective arena to discuss your concerns. The relationship with your therapist will be an important backdrop for good therapeutic work. You will gain self-insight into patterns of relating and work towards making more informed choices and more positive bonds with others. I work with Individuals, Couples and Families across a range of relationship concerns such as: break-ups, divorce, affairs, sexual difficulties, jealousy, commitment issues, poor communication, power imbalances, domestic violence, wedding/premarital counseling. Issues for Relationship Therapy • Arguments & Conflict • Commitment Issues • Jealousy & Anger • Separation & Divorce • Extra-Marital Affairs • Domestic Abuse • Poor Communication • Power Imbalances • Sexual Problems • Pre-Marital Counseling What are the Benefits of Relationship Counseling? • Explore your historical patterns of relationships. • Improve communication skills in relationships. • Form healthier patterns of relating.
Bereavement is the feeling of grief when we lose someone or something close to us. Death and loss are an inevitable part of life; shock, numbness, anger and sadness form part of the natural grieving process. However, if left unprocessed, such losses can leave us with emotional scars and long term difficulties including mental health issues. What are the Stages of Bereavement, Grief and Loss? The first usual response to a bereavement is one of Shock and Disbelief. Denial normally follows, as the bereaving find it difficult to accept the reality of the loss. It is normal to experience Anger and even Guilt. A period of Depression can follow which can include symptoms such as sleeplessness, irritability, loss of motivation, social withdrawal, changes in appetite and physical pains. At some stage the bereaved move to a position of Acceptance. Issues for Grief/Loss Counseling • Death of a loved one • Miscarriage/Abortion • Personal Injury/Illness • Redundancy • Moving Home • End of Relationship • Children Moving Away What are the Stages of Bereavement, Grief and Loss? If you are experiencing grief or loss (death of a loved one, divorce, redundancy, miscarriage/abortion, moving home, children leaving home or personal injury/illness), counseling can help you process it in a more healthy way. Bereavement Counseling can help you through the grieving process - to process the painful emotions, to accept the loss, to make relevant adjustments and to help discover productive coping mechanisms. The bereavement process is usually a lengthy one, and counseling can support you during this difficult time on either a short or longer-term basis.
Stress is one of the most common mental health problems in the UK. In small amounts, stress can be tolerated. However, prolonged or intense stress levels can impact on our relationships, work performance, and lead to panic attacks and/or depression. Symptoms can include irritability, lack of concentration, sleeping problems, negative thinking, changes in appetite, lack of motivation, loss of libido, social withdrawal and mood swings. Stress can also contribute to physical symptoms such as skin disorders, IBS and digestive problems, headaches, muscular tension, high blood pressure and other bodily aches and pains. What is Stress Management Counseling & Psychotherapy? Counseling and psychotherapy can be instrumental in tackling the root cause of stress and working on ways of managing it. My Stress Counseling treatment is designed to help you explore the causes of stress, including those created by work, family, and past experiences. It may be important to understand what you are doing to maintain high stress levels - for example some behaviors serve to exacerbate stress. I will work with you to develop stress-reduction techniques and to promote psychologically healthier patterns of living. Issues for Stress Counseling • Work Pressures • Family Stresses • Relationship Worries • Difficulty Coping • Panic Attacks • Irritability • Physical Ailments • Constant Tension What are the Benefits of Stress Management Counseling? • Opportunity to explore the underlying causes of your stress and anxiety. • Examine your thoughts, feelings and behaviors that contribute to stress. • Gain self-understanding and Insight, including identifying stress triggers. • Develop tailor-made coping strategies to manage stressful situations. • Improve your ability to handle pressures and your reactions to them. • Learn Techniques and Tools that are effective for you for the Long-Run.
A healthy level of self-esteem can serve us well in life - especially at work and in our relationships. Sadly, many of us suffer from low confidence and low self-worth. What is Low Self-Esteem Counseling & Psychotherapy? Counseling for Low Self-Esteem involves an exploration of how it may have evolved (early experiences or more recent events), how it affects your day-to-day life, and how you would like things to change. Counseling will offer you the tools to reach those goals, in the context of a safe and supportive therapeutic relationship, often drawing on existential therapy techniques. I will work to eliminate low self-esteem and lack of confidence. Helping you establish your hopes and expectations, explore background factors and I will support you in your journey to developing inner strength and self-belief. Issues for Self-Esteem Counseling • Poor Confidence • Shyness • Low Self-Belief • Assertiveness Training What are the Benefits of Self-Esteem Counseling? • Understanding the Root Causes of your Anger/Irritability. • Examine the Thoughts, Feelings and Behaviors that contribute to Low confidence. • Gain Self-understanding and Insight. • Improve your Self-Image. • Assertiveness Training, if relevant.
How Can Counseling Help with Abuse? For those who have suffered the pain and devastation of abuse, it can be extremely hard to confide in those around you the painful memories and unwarranted feelings of guilt, shame and anger that you may be experiencing. Instead, you may carry the heavy weight of these memories and emotions inside making life seem simply unbearable. However, counseling and psychotherapy can offer you a safe space to talk through abusive memories and discuss how they are affecting you in the present. As a therapist, I can provide a supportive and non-judgmental environment to help you to deal with the intensity of emotion as you walk through painful memories. Therapy will also equip you with new perspectives and tools to help you develop healthier coping strategies, and provide you with the reassurance to deal with flashbacks and nightmares that keep the pain of abuse alive. The journey to overcoming abuse is a difficult one, and it may be the case that it has to become harder before it gets better, but no matter the circumstance your therapist can support you through every step, empowering you so that you are able to move on and live life without such devastating burdens. Benefits of Counseling and Psychotherapy • Help process traumatic events in safety and confidence. • Deal with the by-product of trauma and abuse including nightmares and flashbacks. • Relieve accompanying symptoms such as depression, anxiety and low confidence. • Develop tailor-made coping strategies to deal with the effects of abuse. I have extensive training and experience in supporting those who have suffered abuse and can help you begin your journey towards a happier life. Additionally, if you wish to combine counseling and psychotherapy with medication I can refer you to a private psychiatrist to ensure you are in receipt of the best quality of support. Information Guide to Abuse Experiencing a traumatic or abusive event can be a devastating and painful experience and can come in a variety of forms. These events can make you feel helpless, and unsafe and can lead to anxiety, depression, panic attacks and post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Many people who have experienced abuse believe they must have done something wrong and so deserved the treatment they experienced leading to intense feelings of shame and guilt. They may also feel afraid, worthless and unable to form trusting relationships with others. These feelings can cause devastation in the life of the individual leading to problems in relationships, employment and health. Types of Abuse Abuse can come in many forms, and can affect the whole spectrum of society. Men, women and children can all be victims of abuse and can therefore all feel the devastating consequences of such traumatic events. If you have suffered from abuse of any kind including the types of abuse listed below, you may benefit from counseling and psychotherapy. • Physical Abuse: Physical abuse constitutes acts of physical violence such as hitting, shaking, burning, choking and other actions that can cause physical injury to the body. Mugging can also be constituted as physical abuse. • Sexual Abuse:Sexual abuse covers actions of a sexual nature such as rape, sexual assault, or forms of child abuse. • Emotional Abuse:This can be the most difficult to identify because there are usually no outward signs of abuse. Emotional abuse constitutes actions such as being criticized constantly, threatened, bullied, dismissed, or being yelled at. Emotional abuse can be just as painful and damaging as physical abuse. • Neglect:Neglect can occur when adequate food, housing, clothing or medical care is not provided for example in childhood. Additionally, emotional neglect happens when support, love and attention are not provided. Self-Help Reading Suggestions - on Abuse Counseling You may be interested in reading these two books, which provide an insightful and practical approach to abuse: •‘Overcoming Childhood Trauma: A Self Help Guide Using Cognitive Behavioral Techniques’ (2000) by Dr. Helen Kennerley •‘The Survivor’s Guide: To Recovery from Rape and Sexual Abuse’ (2005) by Robert Kelly, Fay Maxted, Elizabeth Campbell.