What attracted you to become a therapist?
I have always been interested in psychology and human behaviour and the way we think and act fascinates me. Early in my career I worked with young people in a children’s home and in a pupil referral unit which gave me an insight into how offering constant support and building on strengths can lead to dramatic change in peoples' lives. This capacity for change and self-actualisation, as Carl Rogers talks about, and being part of that change drove me to train as a professional counsellor.
Where did you train?
My training lasted for four years and I obtained my diploma in Therapeutic Counselling at Amersham and Wycombe college. I am also a qualified supervisor offering supervision to individuals or in a group setting.
Can you tell us about the type of therapy you practise?
I am a person-centred counsellor and my work focuses on the individual and making sense of their world. I feel I offer a service that is tailored and unique to the individual I am working with. I offer an approach that gives each client non-judgemental support, insight and a positive focus towards leading a more fulfilling life.
What sort of people do you usually see?
I run my own private practice in Fleet Hampshire called LifeTalks. I work with young people from 15 years of age and adults. I have worked with a range of presenting issues such as anxiety, depression, relationship problems, personality disorders, bipolar, self-esteem issues and issues around personal growth.
What do you like about being a therapist?
I enjoy the challenge of working with people from different backgrounds and being presented with a varied array of life issues to work with. I feel it is a privilege to be part of the process of change and I also learn a lot from all my clients.
What is less pleasant?
I wouldn’t describe my work as unpleasant but if I had to choose, I would say working in private practice can be quite isolating at times.
How long you’ve been with welldoing.org and what you think of us?
I have been with welldoing.org for around six months and I like the way the platform has lots of additional functions like the regular newsletter, and payment options.
Do you ever suggest books or apps to clients?
If I feel a book I’ve read could be beneficial to my clients I would make them aware of it, but I respect that it is their choice to read it or not.
What you do for your own mental health?
I take my own mental health seriously and have found many different ways of keeping myself healthy both mentally and physically. I enjoy losing myself in music whether it's listening to music or playing the drums. I also enjoy running and rock climbing and find the endorphins help keep me balanced and happy. I also believe in taking time to be quiet and have found meditation very helpful in keeping me balanced and focused.
You are a therapist in Fleet, Hampshire. What can you share with us about seeing clients in this area?
My Fleet clinic is central and has good transport links by road and train. I see both adults and young people and find people really like the atmosphere of the clinic.
What’s your consultation room like?
My consultation room is spacious and comfortable. The room is equipped with a sofa and is very quiet. There is a reception area where you will be greeted with a warm smile.
What do you wish people knew about therapy?
I feel people often access therapy when there is a crisis in their life, and I wish this wasn’t always the way as Id like to see people access therapy before the crisis occurs. I believe that therapy can be used to maintain a stable sense of self and so there doesn’t always have to be major issues going on to feel compelled to enter therapy.
What did you learn about yourself in therapy?
I continue to learn a lot about myself, but I would say that learning more about acceptance has enabled me to continue to grow and be happier with who I am.