Meet the Therapist: Victoria Champion
What attracted you to become a therapist?
I have always had a passion for helping people to recognise and utilise their inner strength in order to cope with not only specific circumstances, but ultimately in their day-to-day lives.
Having always believed that we have the power within us to make great changes and through not only my counselling but also Reiki Master studies I learned a lot about mind-check, now termed mindfulness, compassion and empathy. I learned that we cannot fix people but that we can help them to help themselves, if they are open to this.
I have witnessed emotional healing on an extraordinary level and learned about the importance of building an excellent rapport with individuals who are suffering, for whatever reason, in order for them to feel safe, secure and open to communicating their issues, experiences and vulnerabilities. All this and more is what attracted me to become a therapist.
Where did you train?
I trained through an organisation called Chrysalis and this was a three-year Level 4 Integrative Psychotherapeutic Counselling Diploma. Whilst my core studies are completed, I continue to develop professionally at every given moment and attend regular CPD events and workshops.
Can you tell us about the type of therapy you practise?
I am a qualified integrative psychotherapist and what this means is that I draw upon a range of different therapies to help guide you through your process. The reason I chose this type of therapy is that I believe that there is not one fix for all when it comes to therapy. We are all individuals and what works for one person may not work for another, this not only goes for therapy but life in general.
How does integrative therapy help with symptoms of anxiety?
By working in an integrative manner, with, for example, anxiety, we can explore together a number of ways how and why your anxiety is presenting. I believe there is always a root cause to our issues and we are often not aware of what this root cause is. By working integratively we can utilise a psychodynamic approach, exploring your past and what is happening for you now, and hope to get to this root cause. Alongside this, giving you day to day coping mechanisms, for example mindfulness, through the use of CBT (Cognitive Behavioural Tools).
What sort of people do you usually see?
What do you like about being a therapist?
The best part about being a therapist is bearing witness to an individuals successful process. Watching somebody working hard to heal from his or her emotional wounds is something that will never get old and I feel hugely privileged to be able to do this work.
What is less pleasant?
The less pleasant part of being a therapist is bearing witness to the emotional trauma that we humans put upon others and ourselves.
How long you’ve been with welldoing.org and what you think of us?
I have not been using welldoing.org for very long but it has so far been a great place to feel part of a community of therapists. There is an endless amount of information to access and being able to use the booking system is a fantastic feature.
Do you ever suggest books or apps to clients?
I do indeed suggest both books and apps to my clients. I find the Calm app a great re source for individuals to use and as for books, Robin Sharma, Alain de Botton, Paulo Coehlo – there are a myriad of amazing books well worth reading on one’s journey through therapy and life in general.
What you do for your own mental health?
With regard to my own mental health there are a number of things that I like to do, one of which is reading. I am also very aware of self-care and take the time to have an “off” day every now and again. This means putting down my phone, taking myself off for a massage or spa day, spending time with the people I love or cleaning my home whilst listening to music, I find this strangely therapeutic.
You are a therapist in Farnham, Surrey. What can you share with us about seeing clients in this area?
Working in Farnham brings a number of different clients from all walks of life. This can be anybody from an individual who works in a high-powered and stressful role and commutes into London on a daily basis, through to a stay-at-home mum or elderly person who has recently moved into one of the many retirement homes around here.
What’s your consultation room like?
I work from a number of centres here in Farnham and all the rooms are quite similar. I feel they all provide a space, which feels safe and where people are able to relax and feel comfortable (emotionally and physically) enough to share their thoughts.
What do you wish people knew about therapy?
I guess my biggest thing that I wish people knew about therapy is the hard work that is involved and that whilst we are here to guide you through your process by holding a safe space for you and hopefully educate you on certain psychological processes, we are not miracle workers and we do not FIX people.
What did you learn about yourself in therapy?
I learned so much about myself in therapy but I guess one of the biggest things was to be kinder to myself and not allow my inner critic to get out of control. It was a long, often painful, but wonderful process to have gone through and something I continue to work on.