How does therapy work?
The work unfolds in the relationship between client and therapist. It is one where you are free to explore your thoughts, feelings and experiences with an impartial but understanding other who listens patiently without judgment. It is a shared journey, undertaken together, where we unravel your experiences and emotions. Through this process of exploration, you can develop a better understanding of yourself.
We start with an introduction, and this is about us getting a sense of each other. Discussing the practicalities of our work, such as the day and time we will meet. Next, we move on to assessment, where I invite you to tell me what brought you to see me. It will help us both to get an idea of what the focus of our work will be. We will agree on an area of work and discuss how long we will work together during contracting. Naturally, things may change, and we can revisit the contract at any time.
Therapy is most effective when you are open and honest about your feelings and experience. It may feel strange at first, and I encourage you, especially if you are new to therapy, to relax and take your time. I suggest that initially, we agree to work together for six weeks, during which time we will review the work and see how we are doing.
I believe that it is essential to find the right therapist for you. That is why I offer a free initial consultation. Following this, I provide short-term and open-ended therapy either at my office in Hove or remotely online using Zoom. We will meet on the same day and at the same time each week. Therapy can be for a set duration of time or open-ended, depending upon your needs. Sessions last for 50-minutes, I charge £60 per session.
People come to therapy for many different reasons. Some may feel unable to cope with a problematic situation or experiences from their lives, both past or present. Some may worry about future events. Others may feel lost or overwhelmed with their lives and generally 'stuck'. Whatever the reason you are reading this page, I intend to highlight some of the issues I often see.
There are times when we all experience anxiety. Maybe it is before a job interview, before travelling or an exam. Feelings may include a general sense of unease, worry, panic or fear. For some, sensations will be fleeting and mild, but they may be prolonged and intense for others, like a persistent nagging feeling of dread.
In therapy, we aim to slow things down and work mindfully to explore the origin of your feelings that may lead to anxiety and seek to find ways to manage and deal with situations as they arise.
Feelings of sadness, unhappiness or being generally fed up are all valid read reasons for coming to therapy. But depression is more than feeling this way. Depression is an illness that often lasts for weeks, months or longer and can feel devastating. Depression can lead to feelings of isolation, becoming withdrawn or shut down. It is not something that changes quickly, and support will likely take many forms, including working with your GP.
In therapy, we explore your experience of living with depression. It is not a quick-fix; instead, it is a non-judgemental, supportive relationship where you can talk openly and honestly about your feelings.
Humans are social animals. Born helpless and raised within an environment where we are reliant upon our caregivers for survival. Therefore, we form our earliest experiences in a relationship. Later, our childhood experiences, school and adolescence, all create a map of our understanding of relationships. I believe that our experience of being in the world stems from many different relationships. These include our relationship with ourselves, our family and friends, colleagues and co-workers. Our relationship with pets, work, money, sex, social media and the list is endless.
Relationships may feel rewarding and joyous, or challenging. Therapy supports us in an exploration of who we are, examining patterns of behaviour. The therapeutic relationship creates the opportunity for a new experience where we can grow and evolve.
Loss & Bereavement
Loss can bring up a range of difficult emotions that can be hard to manage, ranging from anger, sadness, loneliness, shock, guilt, and grief. Grief is an experience that touches us all at different times in our lives. It may be the pain we feel for a lost love or the career we did not pursue. Relationships that ended, possibly feeling unresolved. The loss of a job, social or financial status. The death or departure of a loved one or loss of a cherished pet can devastate us, bring up feelings of abandonment.
Therapy provides a supportive space where you can talk openly about your feelings and work through them.
Highly stressful situations that shatter your sense of security and make you feel helpless and unprotected in a hazardous environment can cause emotional and psychological trauma. A single traumatic event, such as a car accident, a natural disaster, or a violent attack, can induce trauma. However, it can also result from chronic, unrelenting stress, such as growing up with or experiencing a violent, abusive relationship, living in a dangerous area or struggling financially.
Members of minority groups, such as race, religion, sexuality or gender, may also experience trauma through negative experiences of prejudice, bullying and abuse.
Whatever the cause of your trauma, working to build a safe, trusting relationship with your therapist can support you in sharing your feelings and experiences and creating tools and resources to help you move on with your life.
Living with low self-esteem can feel shaming and painful. It can be an isolating experience where we can feel alone and cut off from the world. If you have poor self-esteem, you may have a pessimistic attitude toward life, making it appear hopeless or pointless. You may believe that you are useless and that others are superior to you. You may find it tough to express your true feelings or lack the confidence to be forceful. As a result, you may believe that others exploit you and mistreat you.
Therapy helps us to explore our belief systems and unpick where these ideas originated. Then, through examining and questioning them, we start to change our view of ourselves and others.