Read our posts about counselling

What you Need to Know About Counselling for Children

What you Need to Know About Counselling for Children

I am sometimes asked, why can’t just any psychotherapist or counsellor work with children? Why do I need to look for somebody with specialist training? My answer would be, whilst any fully qualified adult psychotherapist or counsellor may choose to work with children and young people, there are particular differences in therapeutic work with children and adults that require different skills and experience. Some differences between adults, children and adolescents are obvious, but the needs and expressions of these age groups are distinctly different. As well...
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Silver Circle: A Support Network for the Later Stages of Life

Silver Circle: A Support Network for the Later Stages of Life

Aged 50 and at the height of my former career, I was one day informed that I had become ‘surplus to requirements’ and without warning made redundant. I felt then that I had been stripped of my sense of identity, my sense of purpose and everything I thought I had known about the world. That shocking experience is the base metal from which Silver Circle has been formed. Having re-trained as a counsellor and psychotherapist, my work has since been primarily with adults on a one-to-one basis; in the process I have found it particularly rewarding to work with people who,...
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Why Counsellors are so Busy at Christmas

Why Counsellors are so Busy at Christmas

Although Christmas is a festive period it's not always a happy time for everyone. Some people really struggle with life in December, perhaps more-so than at any other time of the year. As a result it is quite a common time for people to seek out a counsellor and start having counselling. This is partly because of the widespread preconceptions that we have about Christmas and the New Year, that this whole period should be a happy, sparkly, carefree time for socialising and celebrating with friends and family. But if the reality of our lives doesn't match...
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What is Music Therapy?

What is Music Therapy?

What is music therapy? Depending on many things, including my energy levels and perception of the openness of the questioner, this question can elicit from me a breadth of reactions. It's the one most often posed to me, since my decision to train as a music therapist five years ago. It's one for which the answer has since mutated into many fluid variations and continues to be re-defined for me. To a stranger, I will answer, “using music to help others”. To an interested colleague however, the answer is more complex, as music therapy is not one unified...
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Man up for Psychotherapy

Man up for Psychotherapy

When it comes to the talking therapies, it is definitely not a man’s world. Not only are women far more likely to opt for a talking therapy when feeling distressed, but as Andrew Samuels pointed out in a previous post, more than 80% of BACP members are female. In this simple context it’s no wonder some men may wonder if therapy was really for them. Wouldn’t it be better to just “man up”, like their fathers did? “Getting on with it” is certainly a British trait, one which many trace back to distant fathers returning from war unable to speak about their...
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Eating Disorders: A Deep-Rooted Problem

Eating Disorders: A Deep-Rooted Problem

Increasingly it seems that almost every woman has some sort of disordered relationship with food and it’s become quite rare for women I see in my therapy practice not to have issues with food and body image. It’s so common in our society that it seems almost normal. However diagnosed eating disorders such as anorexia and bulimia are far more serious than the day-to-day preoccupation with food and weight that many women experience. Sophie contacted me in her late twenties, having had an eating disorder for over ten years. She had reached the point where she...
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Depression: What it is and how to deal with it

Depression: What it is and how to deal with it

From time to time most of us may say "I'm feeling a bit down" but what does it actually mean to be depressed?  Depression can take many forms and vary in terms of how long it lasts and impacts us, however it usually involves more than just feeling a bit down. With at least one in ten of us experiencing depression in our lives it's likely that if you haven't experienced it yourself, you will know someone who has, even if you haven't been aware of it. Mild depression  At one end of the spectrum is what's often referred to as low level or mild depression....
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Online Counselling Explained

Online Counselling Explained

Traditionally, the term ‘counselling’ generally refers to the confidential conversation between a professionally trained counsellor and a client. This conversation usually takes place at a mutually agreed date and time. However, if you lead a busy life, work overseas or in shifts, or you're the parent/guardian of young children, then ‘face-to-face’ counselling may not be for you. Online counselling has some similarities with face-to-face counselling. You still engage in a conversation with a professional counsellor, with the intention of finding a way forward...
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Gambling Addiction Therapy

Gambling Addiction Therapy

Jo had never seen herself as a gambler. When she realised she had run up a debt of over £1,500 on what she told herself was harmless fun, it came as a terrible shock. It was only when she tried to stop, however, that she was forced to admit how big her problem had become. At 28, Jo had recently left a difficult relationship and was living alone with her two children. She had a part time job as an office assistant, and her life seemed routine and lacklustre. She got into the habit of playing games on her phone once the children were in bed; it was an innocent way to...
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How Words Healed Me

How Words Healed Me

No-one now is a greater believer in therapy than me. But hitherto there’s been one huge problem with talking cures: finding the right therapist. It took me several years, three therapists and hundreds of pounds before I found Sarah who then transformed my life. First I had to believe that I needed to embark on therapy. I was initially resistant. Eventually it was my psychiatrist who persuaded me of how valuable therapy can be. A person, unlike a pill, can listen to your story when you are well enough to tell it, and give you a fresh perspective, he said....
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