What attracted you to become a therapist?
The idea of helping people.
Where did you train?
What sort of people do you usually see?
Adult individuals and couples.
What do you like about being a therapist?
I get a kick out of helping people.
What is less pleasant?
When I am not sure how to help.
How long you’ve been with welldoing.org and what you think of us?
A couple of years. You have some very good ideas.
Have you used the booking and payment system? And how do you find that?
Not yet, but I am open to learn.
Have you joined the welldoing.org Therapist Community on Facebook? If so, how did you find it?
Not yet but I intend to do so in February.
Do you ever suggest books or apps to clients?
Frequently. I read a lot of self-help books in case I find good ones to suggest, often reading ones recommended by supervisors and others in order to get a feel for them before making suggestions. I make it clear clients should ideally read the reviews of similar books and choose the one that attracts them.
One general book which helps us understand ourselves is ‘Families and How to Survive Them’ by John Cleese and Robyn Skinner.
A good book on motivation: ‘Feel the fear and do it anyway’ by Susan Jeffers
On assertion: ‘A woman in your own right’ by Anne Dickson
On mindfulness: ‘The Power of now’ Eckhart Tolle
Couples: ‘Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus’ by John Gray
Obviously, this is a small, “popular” selection. There are many others. I found Professor Paul Gilbert quite good (e. g. Overcoming Depression) and a very informative book on CBT is Feeling Good by Dr David Burns.
Apps: CBT Thought Diary; Headspace; Calm. I also suggest some Ted talks sometimes.
What you do for your own mental health?
Good question. I try to get at least a minimum of exercise (often more), I meditate, eat well, take appropriate supplements, follow my own advice (as much as possible!) and try to follow an interest and see friends and family. I also use strategies like looking at ways of combatting intrusive thoughts, thinking of things to be grateful for every day and focusing on positives, among others.
What’s your consultation room like?
I work from two offices in the centre of Oxford. Both cosy.
What do you wish people knew about therapy?
Nothing. Keep an open mind.
What did you learn about yourself in therapy?
That I need to be more assertive.