"As above so below as within so without"
- Hermes Trismegistus
How many counselling sessions will I need?
This type of counselling is long-term as it involves work at depth and focuses on long term healing in getting to the root of the problem. The length of time needed differs depending on each individual and the frequency of sessions but it's not uncommon for this therapy to last months or years, particularly if working with trauma and complex issues. It can be used for shorter term counselling if a client wants to focus on a specific issue or problem where they have more awareness of what they need from the work.
How do I get the best out of counselling?
Regularly self-reflecting, journaling, being curious about your inner world, thoughts, feelings, and behaviours in-between sessions will help you get the most out of the work. Journaling is a fantastic tool for enhancing your personal growth, recording your insights and will really help the counselling process. Using creativity and imagination (painting, drawing, writing poetry, crafting) is also very helpful as this is a great way to express your unconscious experiences, thoughts and feelings. Fostering self-care in-between sessions, particularly after sessions that have been emotionally challenging and difficult will really help you through the process.
What is self-care?
Learning about what you need to look after yourself and self-soothe during this process is an important part of your healing and is setting you up with an essential life skill that will help you cope better with life’s challenges. Journaling, cuddling up in a blanket, allowing yourself to feel and express your emotions, talking to a friend or family member, taking a break, creating boundaries, meditation, having a bath or an early night, listening to music, watching a film, reading, spending time in nature and exercise, are all examples of ways you can practice self-care. There are many more and it's important to find what is helpful for you as this is different for everyone.
How long are the counselling sessions?
The sessions are for one hour usually at the same time and day every week
Why are weekly counselling sessions important?
When starting counselling, regular weekly sessions are needed to build up the therapeutic relationship which is so essential for the counselling process and success of the work. Weekly sessions build trust, keep momentum going, create a reliable space for meaningful work and help foster that feeling of safety which is needed to dive deep and explore the root causes of your struggles in a gentle and supportive way. Committing to regular counselling sessions is a way to honour yourself and your healing process, and it sets you up for the best possible outcome in therapy.
What if I can’t commit to or afford weekly counselling sessions?
As a minimum, I would ask for clients just starting therapy to commit to at least two weekly sessions (two sessions every four weeks). However, it is important to be aware that this will impact the therapeutic progress and make the counselling process longer.
When can I reduce the frequency of my counselling sessions?
As our work progresses, and you see the positive change within yourself and can cope better with whatever you were struggling with, this time can be reduced to two weekly sessions and then further to once a month if needed. This gradual reduction will happen naturally when you feel confident within yourself that you have made the changes, sufficiently built up your inner resources and can now consider bringing the therapy to an end.
Where do the counselling sessions take place?
The sessions take place over the telephone or via a teams video call in the comfort of your own home or in a quiet, private comfortable place where you are not going to be disturbed.
How can I help prepare for the counselling sessions?
Before the session it can be useful for you to write down some things that have been on your mind or what you have experienced in between sessions. It may be helpful to try to have a few minutes to yourself before the session to focus on your breathing and getting yourself comfortable - having water, tissues and a notebook to hand 😊
What if I feel too overwhelmed and don’t know where to start?
It is completely normal to feel overwhelmed and apprehensive when starting therapy and symbolically it can feel like a tangled ball of wool struggling to separate and pull apart the chaos. However, when you have your first session, you will start somewhere and that is usually the most important issue for you at the time. Often many things come out during the first session, and this is ok, this is your opportunity to off load all your issues and concerns and is completely normal. I will always guide you and ask questions that will help you to start slowly unpick this ball of wool.
Is Counselling confidential?
Yes, everything you say within the counselling session is completely confidential with the following exceptions;
- unless you disclose you are going to cause serious harm to yourself or another person
- If a child or vulnerable adult is at risk of immediate significant harm/abuse
- During the counsellor’s supervision session where the counselling process may be discussed, however, no personal details are disclosed and the client remains anonymous