Meet the Therapist: Ian Myers
What attracted you to become a therapist?
I have always been interested in mental health and understand how it feels from the other side of the sofa. I trained at work as a mental health first aider and realised a passion for it, so in my fifties retrained to become a counsellor.
Where did you train?
I trained with Chrysalis, a non-profit organisation, registered with the National Counselling Society. I did this whilst maintaining a full-time job. Every non-working hour committed to practice, learning, journalling and essay writing
Can you tell us about the type of therapy you practise?
I am an integrative, person-centred counsellor. I try to match the appropriate modality to the client’s requirement. One of the most important aspects of therapy is the ability to build a real relationship with the client, so they feel fully understood and supported.
I work with clients on their past, their present and their aspirations for their future.
How does your experience help with symptoms of grief?
My practice placement was with Cruse bereavement charity, and I continue to support them today. I have a passion to support clients through loss, and it’s a joy and a privilege to walk the journey with them.
What sort of people do you usually see?
I see individual adults 18+ dealing with a wide range of difficulties, from grief, anxiety, and depression to sexual identity and beyond.
Have you noticed any recent mental health trends or wider changes in attitude?
I do believe we are starting to break down the stigma of mental health. My client’s ages range from 18 through to 82 so far, and I am seeing more and more older clients coming for support now, which is very positive. I am also seeing more men than ever before, so I hope the message is finally getting out there that it is OK for men to reach out.
What do you like about being a therapist?
Supporting a person through the changes they want to make in their life is truly a privilege.
How long have you been with Welldoing and what you think of us?
I’ve been part of Welldoing for about 18 months and I enjoy the articles and information they provide. I also feel a part of something worthwhile.
Do you ever suggest books or apps to clients?
Mindfulness websites and apps are always very popular with many of my clients.
What you do for your own mental health?
I love to get outdoors, spending time with my family and beautiful golden retriever. I understand the importance of self-care so make sure I get enough rest and time away.
You are a therapist in North Hampshire. What can you share with us about seeing clients in this area?
If Covid gave one positive in terms of my profession, it was that it improved the ability for therapists to work remotely. I have a good mix of local face-to-face clients, as well as a large number scattered across the UK, whom I work with via Zoom or telephone.
What’s your consultation room like?
A cosy and a safe place to talk about the issues my clients are dealing with.
What do you wish people knew about therapy?
I wish everyone knew how rewarding it can be for both the client and the therapist. Having someone truly hear you, without judgement of opinion, should be everybody’s right.
What did you learn about yourself in therapy?
Far too much to share here. It did, however, cement the passion I have mentioned.